Reduce Stress Increase Productivity and Health – Vacation Way
Vacations Can Soothe The Soul, and Help with Productivity, Health and More! Many people don’t take vacations often enough. In fact, according to a recent poll, around half of readers don’t take annual vacations; in fact, many readers never take them! And now with increasing frequency, when we do take vacations, we often bring work along with us, keeping ourselves essentially still in the work mindset we’re trying to escape. This is unfortunate for several reasons:
- Vacations Stave Off Burnout: Workers who take regular time to relax are less likely to experience burnout, making them more creative and productive than their overworked, under-rested counterparts.
- Vacations Can Keep Us Healthy: Taking regular time off to ‘recharge your batteries’, thereby keeping stress levels lower, can keep you healthier.
- Vacations Can Strengthen Bonds: Spending time enjoying life with loved ones can keep relationships strong, helping you enjoy the good times more and helping you through the stress of the hard times. In fact, a study by the Arizona Department of Health and Human Services found that women who took vacations were more satisfied with their marriages.
- Vacations Can Help With Your Job Performance: As the authors of the above study suggest, the psychological benefits that come with more frequent vacations lead to increased quality of life, and that can lead to increased quality of work on the job.
- Vacations Promote Creativity: A good vacation can help us to reconnect with ourselves, operating as a vehicle for self-discovery and helping us get back to feeling our best.
The bottom line is that taking a good amount of time away from the stresses of daily life can give us the break we need so that we can return to our lives refreshed and better equipped to handle whatever comes.
While not everyone is able to take a vacation, for those who can take several days or a few weeks off for a trip, I’ve compiled the following resources from some of About.com’s travel sites. These can help you plan the best type of trip for yourself so you can come back feeling ready for anything. (For those of you who can’t take off enough time for a traditional vacation trip, keep reading; I’ll have resources for you, too.)
- Top 10 Ideas for a Great Romantic Getaway
If you’re looking to get away with the one you love, here are some great ideas on how to make the most of a romantic trip!
- How To Find the Perfect Bed and Breakfast
Not all bed-and-breakfasts are the same. Here’s how to find exactly what you’re looking for so that the only surprises will be, ‘I can’t believe how fun this is!”
- Best Hotels in the United States
Wherever you go, even if you just stay in a hotel in your hometown (which we’ll discuss later), this resource can get you to the best place.
- Step-by-Step Budget Tips for Your Vacation
With a little extra planning, you can have a terrific vacation for much less. Here’s how.
- Family Vacations: Ideas By Region
If you have kids in the mix, your options are a little different. Here are some excellent vacation ideas for families.
For those who don’t have the time or money to take a ‘formal’ vacation, I have an article on quick, cheap vacations that will give you some creative ideas on how to get a nice break and enjoy the benefits of a vacation, for less.
Chikani V, Reding D, Gunderson P, McCarty CA. Vacations Improve Mental Health Among Rural Women: The Wisconsin Rural Women’s Health Study. WMJ, August, 2005.