A stress-free vacation isn’t just about where you go or what you do, but rather how you prepare before you leave. By following these seven tips for a stress-free vacation, you can ensure that your time away from work and the daily grind will be as relaxing as possible.
Tip 1: Set realistic expectations.
This is easier said than done. If you’re going on vacation with a partner or significant other, it’s important to have an open discussion about what each of you is looking for. Are you looking for an active getaway? A beachy relaxing trip? A quiet retreat away from everything? There’s no right or wrong answer to these questions—everyone is different. But knowing what you expect will make planning and experiencing your vacation more enjoyable.
In addition, be sure to research any activities that interest you in advance so that when you arrive at your destination, there won’t be any surprises waiting for you. It can also help to look at photos and reviews of popular attractions beforehand so that if they don’t meet your expectations (which they often don’t), you won’t feel disappointed when things don’t go as planned. Also remember: vacations are supposed to be fun!
Tip 2: Get some rest before you go.
Make sure you sleep well before your trip and use that time to relax. This will help reduce stress, improve your mood, and improve your vacation experience. Plus, it’s hard to enjoy yourself when you’re exhausted! If you have trouble sleeping at night, try taking a warm bath or reading something calming. You can also try some relaxation techniques like deep breathing or yoga poses.
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Tip 3: Start packing in advance.
Many of us have trouble fully relaxing on vacation for many reasons: We feel like we need to check-in at work or are worried about what might be happening back home. But if you start packing before your trip, you’ll prevent that type of stress. Start by compiling a list with everything you want to bring — and stick to it! If you get something extra, ask yourself whether it was worth adding; if not, leave it behind next time.
Also, when possible, take advantage of any hotel laundry services. You can wash clothes during your stay and then pack them when you head out. This is especially useful if you’re traveling somewhere warm or humid where things will get dirty quickly.
Tip 4: Unplug for a bit.
As technology continues to advance, we’re finding ourselves tethered to our devices in increasingly unhealthy ways. It’s great that you can stay connected 24/7 and be reached anywhere at any time, but if you never let go of that hold, it will start to take its toll on your overall well-being and stress levels. Leave your phone behind when you travel—even if just for a day—and enjoy some peace and quiet without interruption. If you do have to bring it with you, make sure airplane mode is activated so that all incoming calls or notifications are blocked out while traveling (and while sleeping).
You don’t need to sacrifice productivity during vacation; there are plenty of apps available that allow you to block specific websites or set aside certain times of day where you won’t be disturbed by work emails. You can also opt for an offline email account if that feels more comfortable. The point is: Unplug as much as possible, even if only for a little bit, because it will help give your mind and body a break from constant stimulation and encourage relaxation.
Tip 5: Have a plan. But leave room for adventure.
It’s important to have an idea of what you want to do, see and eat on your vacation. But don’t get so caught up in the plans that you miss out on opportunities for adventure. A little spontaneity goes a long way towards relieving stress, which can only add to your enjoyment of your trip. Be flexible and go with it – there’s always another chance to hit that museum or try that restaurant later!
Trying to stick to a rigid itinerary can be stressful, especially when everything from weather, traffic, and last-minute closings can easily upend those plans at a moment's notice. Instead, see these roadblocks as a chance to diverge from the beaten path, explore an unexpected location, or wander around a new place, soaking in the new sights.
Tip 6: Set guidelines with your fellow travelers.
You can avoid letting your family fall into their typical sniping at each other by setting guidelines early on. If you have different goals for your vacation, make sure everyone understands them: are you doing it to unwind? To have fun with your kids? Or do you want to get some work done while you’re away?
Set expectations from day one and discuss what constitutes a successful trip—then encourage everyone to meet those expectations. That way, no one will be disappointed when they don’t get what they wanted out of their vacation. Whether you're traveling with a group of friends or your rambunctious kids, make sure you carve out some time to be alone and unwind. After all, that's what vacations are for!
Tip 7: Set the mood for relaxation.
Since vacations are all about unwinding and de-stressing, consider snacks that will help you do just that. CBD gummies are pre-dosed, which eliminates the need to do any sort of measuring. All you have to do is open the bottle and pop a gummy or two into your mouth -- plus they're easy to pack on a road trip or in your beach bag.
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