Everybody needs a break — or at least a change in the regular routine — so I’m taking one this week. This post originally published here a couple of years ago and updated today, is a good reminder, for me anyhow, of why taking a little time off is so important. And you can find scads of other posts all written to help us amplify the goodness in life and cope better with the ick, right here on this site. I’ll be back with new stuff on March 30th and we’ll take on the spring together.
I know, I know, with kids and work and soccer practice and all the expenses of life, it might be tough to take a break for an afternoon, let alone a week’s vacation. But, do it anyhow. Make the time.
Vacations – a break from the regular routine – contribute to peace of mind, good health and yes, better relationships. But, they also make you more productive and efficient when you do return home or to the office. And the slow down also helps strengthen that spiritual connection.
I’m not saying you have to take a 21-day Caribbean Cruise to feel better (though doesn’t just thinking about it feel good?) Even an afternoon off or 10-minute mini-breaks during your day can give you a respite that will make a difference in how you feel. The key is to create a break that will move your focus from the stress of the day to something that offers relief, rest, and joy.
3 benefits of a break:
Better immune function: Even a mini-break has been shown to ease stress and boost immune function – which keeps you from tapping into your sick days when you are supposed to be working.
Try this: Pack a picnic lunch and get out of the office or the house for an afternoon. A simple change of scenery can help you disconnect from the daily stress.
Improved heart health: Women who take regular time off are less likely to die from a heart attack, according to Bigwig researchers.
Try this: While it is best to actually go somewhere, even fantasizing about your dream vacation can create positive thoughts and health benefits. So pull out those travel brochures and begin planning your next trip. Just thinking about it will make you feel better and visualizing it can help make it real.
Enhanced creativity: When you step out of the regular routine, even just for awhile, you start to see things differently. New visuals lead to new ideas and inspiration which can boost your energy – all good stuff when it comes to creating anything from a new dinner idea to drawing.
Try this: Get up and go outside. Go sit on that park bench. Walk a new route around the neighborhood, head to the nature park nearby, plant flower, mow the lawn. Just being in nature can help you see the world differently, plus it’s a proven stress reliever.
Whether it’s a 15-minute time-out or a two-week get-a-way you plan, do something that engages the body, brain and spirit and you’ll feel relaxed, relieved and ready to roll when you head back to the regular routine.
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