Best Reason to Take a Vacation
Who likes to take vacations? I think it’s fair to say almost everyone. Reasons for taking a vacation range from visiting loved ones, to relaxation, to exploring the world and more. With so many different ways to vacation, you may expect the variety of benefits to vary as much as the vacations themselves. However, there is one benefit that rings true across all types of vacations: the joy of anticipation.
The Biggest Benefit of Vacationing
It turns out that planning a vacation brings serious joy to your life. Anticipating an upcoming vacation is half the fun (or more)! Plus, a lack of planning can actually cause stress when you’re on vacation. Advanced planning offers the additional benefits of being less stressed and having a better time when you’re actually on vacation!
Delaying gratification of any kind has been proven to increase happiness. The same is true for vacationers. People who plan a trip at least a month ahead of time reap the benefits of looking forward to their trip. Checking out maps of the area, selecting local attractions to visit, planning meals, etc. all contribute to building excitement.
Another consideration is that purchasing an experience, such as a vacation, often leads to greater feelings of happiness than buying material goods. The high that comes along with material purchases fades quickly. Memories last a lifetime.
(Considering a Disney vacation? Check out the Disney section of Awaken Happiness Within!)
How to Maximize Your Vacation Joy
- Read blogs and books about your destination. You’re gaining additional information about your vacationing options. Less researching needs to be done while on vacation when you already know your options. This gives you more time to relax and enjoy. I love to tell my husband all of the interesting facts I learn before each vacation!
- Also read book and blogs to building anticipation for your trip. Visualizing certain aspects of upcoming vacations when in line at the grocery store, while brushing teeth, etc. amps up the excitement. So does browsing Pinterest looking for articles about your destination. I like creating a Pinterest board for vacations and saving the articles I really enjoy for reference.
- Talk about your upcoming trip with others. Share something you recently learned about the destination or a vacation tradition you’re looking forward to continuing. Those who have been to that vacation spot previously may have some great tips that they’re willing to share. My husband Nick and I went to an amazing show while on our honeymoon because of a coworker’s suggestion. It was one of the highlights of our trip!
- Take several smaller vacations each year rather than one long vacation. When vacations are spread out during the year you gain the benefits of anticipation multiple times. Being a planner, I have been known to book our annual vacation for the next year before we even check out of our current vacation!
- Consider planning vacations yourself, or at least playing a part in the process. Those using a travel agent could ask for recommendations and then share them with other members of their travel party. They can then let the travel agent know what options they’d like booked. Couples vacationing together could share thoughts on excursions they would like to try or restaurants where they may make reservations. Families could also share ideas about details of the trip. We like to have each person in our family pick at least one ‘must do’ for each vacation. It helps each of us get excited for the upcoming trip and helps us plan our vacation time well. That way everyone gets something specifically for them!
- Tie up loose ends at home. Have your mail held, finish up any projects that need to be completed. Knowing that everything at home is taken care of allows you to relax and be in the moment. It often means there is less to do when you get home, allowing you to bask in the post vacation glow a little longer.
- Clean the house before leaving. It is a wonderful and uplifting experience to come home from a trip to a nice clean home. It extends the vacation relaxation just a little bit longer!
Related Post: You’re as Happy as You Think You Are
So what are you waiting for? Start planning now, even if your vacation is a year or more away. That just gives you more time to anticipate the fun you’ll have!
Where would you like to vacation next? Why?