Trains, flights, buses and every available mode of transport is booked totally during the months of April and May when children have summer vacations and individuals too would love to escape from the scorching summer heat and head on to a pleasant place to spend a few days in tranquility and serenity. Taking time off from daily routine and work pressure helps an individual beyond the smaller benefits of happiness and stress, it also boosts productivity and your mood when you take the right vacation. Despite such benefits, people give themselves lame excuses and forego the pleasure of taking a much-needed break. “I will have too much pending work to finish once am back from my vacation”, “My teammates need by undivulged attention to work well” or “All hotels or transportations are booked by the time I decide to go on a vacation”! are some of the often-heard excuses given.
There are some people so passionate about travelling and holidaying that they spend the entire year saving for that one worthy vacation trip! Instagram posts and Facebook photos might portray the message that all people around you are going on a vacation this time of the year. But practically the scenario is not the same. Many don’t holiday for several different reasons-expense, inadequate time, lack of planning or disinterest.
Planning for Happiness
Vacations put you in a different frame of mind and make you spend quality time with family. Its kind of a refresh button for the human body. A survey showed that, out of the 414 travelers, 94% felt high in spirits and energy once back from a vacation and 55% who went on a low-stress trip came back with even more higher energy levels. Anything planned properly is sure to be executed well. Vacations too follow this principle. The type of vacation you plan matters a lot and when there is not much time allocated for planning, you feel more stressed, unsafe and anxious than you were before your vacation. The same survey showed that 28% of correspondents replied that they had a bad vacation due to last-minute planning.
In 1992, the Framingham Heart Study happened and until now, it remains as a benchmark for long-term health studies as this study tracked participants over a 20-year period. Results showed that men who did not plan for vacation breaks raised their risk of heart attack by 30% and the risk for women were even more higher, almost 50%. The study was made after other health factors such as smoking, diabetes, obesity and income levels were considered.
Choose the Right Spot for Holidaying
Holidaying must be enjoyable and must help you refresh your energy levels. Rather than choosing the destination (where) first try listing your priorities (what). If you are afraid of flying, go on a road trip. If you simply want to laze around without much sight-seeing, book a great resort with all amenities where you can spend time. People choose locations depending on where they stay. Americans might prefer going to Europe as their languages and culture are similar. A trip to Asia might be a cultural shock that can even cause distress and upset their mood. Indians might plan a trip to other Asian countries such as Singapore, China or Malaysia. Vacations to the sea, an island or a peninsula is always a safe bet as the cool waters calm your mind greatly.
Shelling Out Money Is an Active Investment of Energy & Time
Research shows that vacations are beneficial for mental health and well-being. They are a reminder that there is more to life beyond targets, deadlines, family duties and responsibilities. In fact, people who don’t take vacations are sicker, less productive, stressed, more anxious and depressed, and this surely would affect work productivity too! Companies too can insist workers to take time off or plan for vacations as part of performance reviews to boost productivity.
A proper vacation can benefit your physical health by lowering blood pressure levels and reducing stress hormones. Mental health benefits are much-increased creativity, inspiration, productivity, getting off depressions, anxiety and fatigue. But remember, vacation is not a break from your healthy lifestyle or eating. You can try to balance your health goals as much as possible even on a trip with the help of practical tips mentioned at www.firsteatright.com. Back to work, even if your workload has increased two-folds, clarity of mind and energy levels can help an individual work smarter and better. Vacation benefits are long-lasting and prepare you for the next few months of gruesome busy schedules. Start looking at vacations like your yearly eye or dental checkups that you can never forego as it is vital to health. Now is the right time to go ahead, request for leave, plan your travel and pack off to some place of your choice. Happy holidaying!
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Dietitian & Nutritionist Dr. Nafeesa Imteyaz.