We all have moments in life where we feel mentally and physically exhausted, lost and a bit fed up. When we feel like this, our automatic response is to lock ourselves away from the world and set up camp on the sofa. But what if I was to tell you that travel plans could hold the answer to improving your mind and body.
Here’s why travel is good for your mental health and why you should look to plan a trip in the near future…
An escape from life’s daily challenges
One of the main reasons many of us travel is to get away from the stress that comes with daily life. For some of us, a trip is the only chance we get to break free from our daily routine and truly reflect on what we want out of life. Not only that but the physical separation from day-to-day roles and responsibilities helps reduce stress and release tension we hold in our bodies every day, often without even realising it!
A chance to meet new people
Meeting new people is one of the best parts of travelling and the impact it can have on your mental health is an added bonus! Apart from the obvious benefits that come from connecting with other people, meeting people from different parts of the world with different backgrounds and circumstances to your own gives you the chance to understand and learn from others. It helps to give you a different perspective on topics and encourages you to be more open-minded.
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A self-esteem boost
Travelling presents us with lots of opportunities to challenge ourselves and flex our problem solving muscles. Whether it’s having to navigate your way around a new city, trying out the local lingo or figuring out how much something will cost you in your own currency, these moments help us get out of our comfort zone and build our confidence.
Expanding your horizons and pushing beyond your safe zone has proven to be very beneficial for our mental health and wellbeing, especially those who struggle with anxiety and depression. It helps you prove that you’re able to deal with new experiences and change, even when you think you can’t.
A chance to learn something new about yourself
Hobbies and interests form a big part of our personality and play an important role in maintaining our mental health and wellbeing. That’s why it’s important to understand what boosts your mood and make more time for things that help to release your happy hormones. Travelling gives you the chance to try out new activities and experiences that you wouldn’t have tried otherwise! It helps you understand what really makes you tick so you gain a greater understanding of who you really are.
Helps fuel your creativity
New environments and immersing yourself in other cultures can spark ideas and thoughts you wouldn’t necessarily get at home – especially when you’re staring at the same four walls you see every day. There is a reason why many musicians, song writers, poets and authors -to name a few – opt for unfamiliar locations to craft their work.
The added bonus of flexing your creative muscle is that once this part of your brain is fired up, it can help you consider imaginative ways of addressing some of life’s challenges too.
Keeps you fit and healthy
I have to admit, this is one I regularly underestimate myself. I think it’s fair to say the big draw for a lot of us when it comes to travelling is the chance to explore. Walking, and sometimes even swimming or hiking, play a big part in helping us to do this.
Not only that but there are many physical activities – for example surfing, yoga and dance – that many of us partake in which help to boost the ‘happy hormone’, endorphins, that help us feel good.