Traveling does a lot to improve you as a person, but among the many benefits, it has, none stand out like the ones it has for your mind and mental health as a whole. There’s a surprising amount of research that suggests travel is excellent for your brain, and not just in the mind-broadening-kind of way.
In a 2010 study, researchers discovered that simply booking a holiday in a dream destination can increase your overall happiness tenfold.
This is because the brain can apprehend the future pay-off. The sheer excitement and anticipation of the beaches, the vastness of the ocean, and the spontaneous adventures with exotic strangers that await are more than enough to have anyone over the moon. The study also advocated for one to wallow in this sense of anticipation to increase this effect further. Delayed gratification might be defined as maturity, but it also defines happiness.
A well-deserved vacation has a lot going for it. Traveling to a new peaceful environment helps you relax, introduces you to new experiences, and you rack up some snaps for the “gram.” Traveling will also do wonders for your mental health and general well-being. Here are six practical ways your mental health improves by traveling.
Travel Relieves Stress
This isn’t a surprise as 90% of cruise brochures, and travel pamphlets are about people oozing positivity as their stress evaporates from their bodies like mist under the hot sun. But in all honesty, the relationship between travel and anxiety is a bit more intricate than it seems. Getting on a plane or cruise ship isn’t enough.
While some studies show a significant drop in stress levels after two or three days in a new travel destination, another explains that if travel isn’t correctly managed, it can cause all kinds of further stress.
It makes sense since you’ll be in a new place with strangers, and people are often afraid of new environments they can’t comprehend.
The trick to staying stress-free while traveling is identifying your stressors and handling them accordingly. If you’re afraid that hiking with your language will be unbearable, check the land rover defender price of leasing.
Travel Lowers the Risk of Depression
While travel itself (if taken to extremes) can cause depression, it is an effective remedy for mood disorders and depression as a whole. A study done by the Marshfield Clinic located in Wisconsin involving thousands of American Women revealed that those who traveled at least twice a year were less likely to experience depression and chronic stress.
Travel has also been shown to increase life satisfaction and improve mood. The longevity of these benefits is still not clear, but refreshers explain that they tend to diminish with time. Similar to the tan you get when you are vacationing.
Travel Makes You Happier
Apart from making you feel less stressed, taking a vacation will also make you feel like you’ve achieved an important milestone in your life. It also breaks up the monotony of day-to-day life and generally makes you a happier person.
It may not take a scientist to realize this, but there is a lot of research proving how traveling makes you happy.
In a study involving more than 1000 Australians, researchers found that their well-being increased during vacations. Another study of 3,650 people in the Netherlands found that more vacation days increase happiness levels in the participants.
Research done on 264 South African travelers discovered that vacation satisfaction directly increased life satisfaction.
Travel Breaks the Work-Stress Cycle
Working for long hours increases stress levels and general dissatisfaction. Traveling will help break this cycle of work and stress. It will be a perfect opportunity to see that you don’t need to work 18-hour days, and your quality of life comes first.
While traveling, you should switch off your phone or uninstall the email app, or better yet, go somewhere with limited cell reception. If you have to check your work emails, limit the number of times you do.
It Encourages Physical Activity
Being fit and physically active is linked to a positive state of mind. If your work consists of you sitting at a desk or in traffic for long hours, you’ll be in dire need of physical activity, and what better way to get it than to travel.
You can go on an adventure and active travel that will involve lots of walking tours, kayaking, swimming, and snorkeling.
You could also visit bustling cities around the work and experience life as a pedestrian there. You may not want to walk around your neighborhood block, but you may happily walk a mile to two to see new sights when you travel.
Traveling Connects You with Nature
Taking a vacation is the perfect opportunity to breathe in the fresh air and experience the calmness of nature. The warm sunlight will stimulate the production of vitamin D and help increase your serotonin levels, which in turn will improve your mood, reduce anxiety and help you sleep better at night.
Studies have also shown that having a walk in the calmness of nature reduces anxiety and depression.
A vacation is essential for your mental health; otherwise, your employer wouldn’t give you vacation days. To make sure you’re traveling is a success, it’s vital that you plan ahead of time, select destinations with a serene environment, and don’t forget to have fun.