[dropcap]The sweet feeling of vacation. Toes in the sand, buried deep in a book and drifting off for an afternoon nap… there’s nothing better. There’s so much we can learn about our own happiness and what it is that makes us feel relaxed from travel. When you need to unwind at home, apply learnings from a recent trip to your everyday life. You just might feel like you’re on a mini staycation. Here are a few ideas to get started:[/dropcap]
Turn off the Noise
Think about what makes you happy on vacation. Perhaps it’s being disconnected from the outside world and allowing your mind to completely reset in the quietness of no WiFi. Constantly being connected to your smartphone can lead to increased stress and can even effect your sleep habits, so it’s no wonder we may feel more relaxed when it’s not constantly at hand. To reset your mind at home, block off time in the evenings to be completely detached from your phone, television and computer. Instead, spend time reading a book or flipping through a magazine the old-fashioned way. It may not be an evening in a mountain cabin away from it all, but it’s one way to feel a little closer to that Zen-like state of mind.
Explore New Streets
Getting lost in a city you’ve never visited is one of the many things that makes traveling so thrilling. Bring the feeling home by being a tourist in your own town and act like you’re on vacation with limited time to try something new. Do that one thing you’ve had your eye on, but haven’t gotten around to. Check out the art museum nearby, try a new food truck or wander shops on a street you’ve never explored. You’ll be amazed at the hidden gems you uncover right in your own backyard.
Retreat to the Outdoors
Many vacations are planned around nature – it provides the perfect outlet to rest and getaway from everyday stresses. There’s even science to back it up. Spending time in nature has been linked to lower levels of mental distress and anxiety. Some studies have even shown that spending more time outdoors in green space can lower your risk for illnesses such as diabetes and heart disease. Reap the benefits of the outdoors as often as you can by retreating to your own backyard or enjoying the beauty of your garden. If you live in a large city and have less access to green space, find a park nearby and become engulfed in the art of doing nothing.
Find Pleasure in the Everyday
To make your day feel more like a holiday, find joy in the little things. Slowing down to enjoy the moment can make your day feel brighter. Pick one thing that you like to do and make it happen. Try cooking a new meal. Find a recipe that may be out of the ordinary and enjoy your evening in the kitchen. Go to a fitness class to mix up your exercise routine. Walk your dog and take the long way home, soaking up a few more minutes of sunshine. Find fun in the obligations you have and make the work on your to-do list feel less like work.