Ahhh sweet summertime.
The sun is out, the birds are chirping and vacation is calling your name…
This past week my boyfriend, his family and I all ventured out to Yosemite National Park! It was the first time I met his sister Heather, her husband, and their 3 adorable little boys (ages ranging from 4-9).
During our time in Yosemite, we went on waterfall adjacent hikes (Vernal Falls for those of you who are familiar), cruised down the Merced River, saw giant Sequoia Trees that were thousands of years old and ended each night playing board games and eating ice cream.
We were surrounded by breathtaking natural beauty, wild landscapes, fart jokes and laughter…. It was perfect.
I’ll admit, I can be a little bit of a workaholic. Always hyper focused on what I need to get done and constantly wishing there were more hours in the day. It’s difficult for me to agree to break away from it all and get outta dodge.
And it’s also hard for me to fork out a little extra money too.
But I can’t express to you how incredibly happy I was that I allowed myself to take this trip and check out from the rest of the world.
It got me thinking about how important it is to take these kinds of trips in life. No matter where you go, or what your budget is, there’s always a way to escape reality.
And the benefits are not something to be taken lightly…. Because, your sanity kind of depends on it!
Read why you need to put your phone down every once and a while, check out, and get out of town!
1. ROAD TRIPS ARE JUST GOOD FOR THE SOUL. PERIOD.
Because, in my mind, these two things are 100% related. (C’mon we all have our thing….what’s yours?)
Road trips=Flaming Hot Cheetos time. Yes, I know they are disgusting, and have 0 nutritional value… but on the ROAD none of this matters to me.
All bets are off.
I’m eating my Flaming Hot Cheetos, putting my feet up on the dash, and singing along to classics like Fleetwood Mac and Johnny Cash, and zoning the F out for a while.
Just talking about it now gets me all tingly and excited. Don’t we all have our favorite guilty pleasures that we pick up at the first gas station or indulge in during a vacation?
Being on the open road also gives you that feeling of freedom and adventure. Driving through little towns in the middle of nowhere (the ones with those ‘methy’ vibes) and thinking to yourself “how do people live out here”? And from there, your mind just starts to wander…
Unless you’re a monk, I’m pretty sure the answer to that question, is pretty much never.
Use this time to be still and reflect. Or hey, be silly and wild too (there’s no rules, remember?)!
Sing as loud as you want to whatever music hits your soul, play a car game with your family, stick your arm out the window and feel the wind on your skin.
Enjoy the little things you never get the chance to stop and enjoy during your regular, everyday grind.
2. IT GETS YOU OUT OF THE SAME OLD,BORING ROUTINE
Wake up, go to work, do some laundry, go to sleep- repeat.
I sure do.
Routines can be great, but like everything else, only in moderation.
At some point, something’s gotta give. We have to shake free of our usual patterns and behaviors and go out and experience what life is all about.
After all, you work pretty damn hard. Allow yourself to enjoy the fruits of your labor. Working to ONLY pay the bills will leave your soul dead inside.
Get you and your partner up off the couch, and try something new! Traveling as a family allows for deeper bonding and higher quality time spent together.
And I know sometimes money is tight. But before you begin to think that you don’t have it in the budget to take a “vacation” (as I’ve often said to myself,) keep in mind that wherever you go doesn’t have to be expensive.
This does not have to be a fancy tropical destination (although, hats off to you if it is)! It can be as simple as a weekend drive, staycation or camping.
All that matters is that you get up and GET OUT!
3. VACATIONS BRING ON A SENSE OF NOSTALGIA
But one of my all-time favorite things about a vacation is the sense of nostalgia that comes with it.
Because when we’re experiencing something new, it brings out the childlike wonderment in us that is buried deep down inside– dying to get out.
My recent trip to Yosemite was particularly nostalgic. I went to Yosemite as a little girl with my family years ago. My dad was bursting with excitement knowing that I was going to be enjoying and experiencing the same views as an adult that he tried to show me as a child.
The whole trip was one big wave of sentimental, fond memories.
It’s pretty remarkable how different sounds, smells and images can ignite that ever peaceful, mysterious feeling on nostalgia. Sometimes you can even experience nostalgia and not even be sure of what exactly you’re feeling nostalgic about. It can be happiness, relaxation or pure joy for all we know!
Honestly, think about how amazing it is to experience this sensation that transcends time!
It’s not everyday that our senses can take us back to some of the best parts of our past.
4. LET GO OF YOUR WORRIES
We are a nation addicted to worry. Demanding, high-stress jobs have us stressed out and run down.
It’s hard not to get caught up in it all. But vacations are a solution to the constant overwhelm we all feel in our daily lives.
They regret spending all their time at work, and not out creating memories and experiencing new things with their loved ones.
This is something to keep in mind next time you’re worried about taking time off of work. Or just worrying in general. Everything will be OK.
I promise you, your company will not crash and burn without you. You owe it to yourself to stop worrying so much all the time and enjoy the years you have on this earth.
Because, when it’s finally our time to look back on the entirety of our lives, we will wish we took it easy more often.
It’s the vacations and adventures we took with the people we care about the most that we will remember. Not how many hours a week we put in at the office.
5. RECHARGE YOUR MIND, BODY, AND SPIRIT
Taking time off is the best way to keep your sanity.
In Yosemite, I had a couple of magical moments where I was looking around and realized I was completely content. I was present and in the moment. Truly stress free, without a care in the world. I wasn’t worrying about work or what I needed to get done in the day.
There’s a reason many famous poets and writers throughout history have talked about the power of getting out into the wild.
But regardless if your next trip is going to a National Park, a tropical island or living that cosmopolitan city life, really let go and live it up to the fullest.
Soak up as much of that culture as humanly possible. Get lost in all the things out there to explore. You’re already there, you might as well give your vacation your all. Leave all your stress and worries at the door and dive right in!
Then when it is time to come back to reality, you will have a fresh new demeanor. Feeling more calm and focused than ever. Humans come with an invisible refresh button too that shouldn’t be forgotten about.
Just like a computer, 90% of problems can be fixed just by hitting the restart button!
Treat yourself to something that allows you to cleanse your soul, get out of your rut, experience nostalgia from your childhood and let go of all your worries!
Life is short and you won’t regret it!
If you have a summer trip planned I’d love to hear where you’re going and what you’re doing! Leave a comment below and share your plans!
Lots of love always xo