There are two types of vacationers: the adventurer and the relaxer. The adventurer is a thrill seeker. As soon as they land at their destination, they are out to explore nearby attractions, participate in all the recommended activities, and try unfamiliar activities, leaving them worn out. On the other hand, the relaxer is all about doing as few things as possible. You will often find them lounging around the pool and moving their muscles only when they have to, like when lifting their favorite caffeinated drinks to their mouths.
However, there is also the mindful vacationer. The mindful vacationer practices mindfulness and takes care of their mental health. Not only does this lower their stress levels and ease negative emotions, but it also increases their overall happiness and helps them achieve optimal mental health.
The following article discusses practicing mindfulness during your vacation and supporting your mental health.
Set Intentions for a Mindful Travel Experience
Mindfulness starts before you fly out to your vacation destination. Before you finalize your trip, consider what you hope to gain from it. Determine the purpose of your vacation. Is it for adventure, relaxation, or leisure? Are you going there to spend quality time with your partner? Or is this a culinary trip where you explore your desired destination through their food? By analyzing your intentions, you create a foundation for a mindful journey and set yourself up for a purpose-driven trip.
Pack Essentials for Practicing Mindfulness on the Go
Practicing mindfulness on the go is not far-fetched. To do so, consider packing a few essential items, including:
Pack clothing made from lightweight and breathable materials like chiffon, cotton, and linen. Also, pack clothing that does not restrict your movement and makes you feel at ease as you hit the different vacation activities.
A Journal and a Pen
Journaling is a powerful mindful exercise. Write your experiences, reflections, and thoughts throughout your journey. Doing so can help you capture important moments, process your emotions, and document the highlights of your journey. It can also pull you away from technology and provide an opportunity for self-reflection.
Sun Protection Gear
Pack sunscreen with high SPF to protect your skin from harmful UVA and UVB rays. Opt for full UV protection sunglasses as they protect your eyes from excessive sunlight while you continue to enjoy time outside. Also, pack wide-brimmed hats and a few long-sleeve tops and blouses for extra coverage and minimized sun exposure.
Research Destinations that Promote Tranquility and Mindfulness
For the best experience, research destinations with peaceful environments. Look for destinations with quiet beaches, gorgeous landscapes, or breathtaking views. Also, consider places with meditation retreats, wellness resorts, or yoga centers. Choosing a tranquil destination that promotes mindfulness lays the foundation for a rejuvenating experience. Moreover, a tranquil destination allows you to experience life at a slower pace, helping you identify areas in your life that need more attention.
Disconnect From Technology and Do a Digital Detox
Practicing mindfulness on your vacation requires you to take a break from technology and do a digital detox. Avoid using your phone, tablet, or laptop as regularly as you do at home. Instead, turn these devices off, embrace journaling, engage with nature, and practice mindful activities like breathing exercises, meditation, or yoga.
You will notice an improvement in your mental health and realize that you are more in tune with yourself and have better emotional control. A digital detox can also help you build a stronger bond with your significant other or reestablish the bond you had at the beginning of your relationship.
Practice Mindful Eating
You can practice mindful eating during your vacation by considering the following suggestions:
- Use small plates as this helps with portion control;
- Do not skip meals because doing so can cause your blood sugar levels to drop or lead to overeating;
- Eat sitting down, as this allows you to appreciate the food before you and keep track of what you are eating;
- Honor your fullness. This may mean saying no to that glistening chocolate cake or a second serving of food that the chef has spent hours preparing; and
- Avoid eating out of a box or bag because doing so makes overeating easy. Instead, serve your food on a plate, allowing you to see how much food you will consume.
Balance Relaxation and Exploration
For the best mindful experience, you need to strike a balance between relaxation and exploration. Dedicate a few hours of each day to relaxation activities like lounging by the beachfront, soaking in a bath, or spa treatments. Also, embrace new experiences like exploring local attractions, trying new cuisines, or participating in activities you would normally never try out. Finding a balance between relaxation and exploration allows you to create the ultimate vacation experience that keeps your body relaxed and engaged and leaves your mind feeling relaxed and refreshed.
Practicing mindfulness during your vacation can help you stay on top of your emotions and nurture your mental health. By setting your vacation intentions, packing essential items, researching destinations that promote mindfulness, doing a digital detox, practicing mindful eating, and balancing relaxation and exploration, you can bring mindfulness to your vacation and return home with inner peace and a renewed sense of purpose.