Travelling has long surpassed the stage of being referred to as the 2-week vacation that people take every year. Today, it is a booming industry, a way of life, a full-time job, and a route to happiness for millions around the globe. Where today, people are travelling more than ever to escape the mundane and replenish themselves. But why is it that travelling has and is becoming a go-to mindfulness activity for so many? Why is exploring a new territory the answer to improving our mental health? We intervene.
How are Travelling and Mindfulness Connected?
Travelling is about the feelings you experience when you marvel at something. And mindful travelling is about surrendering yourself in those moments. When you’re completely immersed in the finer moments of the day. It can be anything – enjoying a plate of pasta to gasping over an intricately carved statue. Travelling mindfully, being present in each moment blurs out everything else.
5 Reasons Why Travelling is Good for Mental Health
Resets Your Mind
Travelling puts your mind in a state of ease. It allows you to unburden yourself of the stress and anxiousness that city and work life bestow you with. For many people, the ‘aftermath’ of taking days off and travelling can last up to five weeks. The sheet pleasure of waking up without alarms, being in no rush to get to work, no honking and traffic – how can one ever be stressed?
Doing the same thing in and out every day takes its toll and can put one’s brain in a state of slumber. A change in environment lets you relax and allows your mind to re-focus. This pushes up your creativity and productivity levels once you’re back in action. You feel motivated to take on work, your ability to think outside the box increases and procrastination gets replaced with proactivity.
You Can Reinvent Yourself
Experiencing or learning something new, enables you to improve your outlook on life. It automatically puts you in a better mood. So, if you tried a new cuisine, or got the chance to catch the sunset over the cliff, the feel-good factor that you experience while travelling is nearly impossible to procure from any other pleasures in the world. Nature teaches you, without you even realizing.
Nature Makes You Hopeful
Walking, running, hiking or just being in a scenic backdrop can make you feel more upbeat and alive. It rekindles empathy and hope as you’re more aware of your surroundings and in sync with everything that is happening around you. Even the sheer magnanimity of things can make us feel like we’re a tiny part of a big jigsaw, like looking at a snow-clad mountain or a violently flowing river can humble us down and make us rethink life.
Simply Makes You Happy!
When life gets to you, what’s a better way to de-stress than to cross places off your bucket list? Going and living in new places, gives you the opportunity to cross paths with new people, events and experiences that rewire you and boost your mood. The feeling of waking up to the excitement of, ‘what will this new day bring?’ can make you spring up from your bed and look forward to the day. The sheer joy of looking forward to your day – that’s how you know you’re alive and thriving.
How to Be More Mindful During Your Next Trip?
Go for Mindful Walks
Leave your phone (if you can) and your earphones back. Take silent strolls either solo or with the people you’re travelling with. Let it be slow and comfortable. Enjoy the silence and expose yourself to the sensations around you.
Try Your Hand at Something New
You don’t travel just to make memories but also to live a life without any ‘what ifs.’ Try that weird-looking dish, do something impromptu, say yes to an adventure sport, or just anything that allows you to move outside your comfort zone. The flooding sense of satisfaction and happiness that will follow, will be etched in your mind forever.
Use the DND Feature
If you’re travelling to take a break, then be true to it. That one thing that connects you with the outside world, yes your phone, put it on DND, on silent or on flight mode. If nothing else, then restrain opening your work emails, messages or anything that takes you away from the present moment. Disconnect, to connect.
The most under-rated way to travel mindfully, is to eat mindfully. Food is a major way through which we come close to another culture. Savour the flavours and the textures. Slow down and pay respect to each bite you take. One way to do this is to chew slowly (32 times) and breathe slowly. Believe us, you’ll feel much more content and satisfied once you finish.
While you’re on vacation, try taking a mental break with this mini break.
Don’t postpone joy, if you feel the mountains or the beaches are calling, go for it! Because now you already know how you can make the most out of your trips.
Read More: Effects of Parental Pressure on Children’s Mental Health
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