There’s scientific proof that travelling can make you a happier person. Here’s how travelling can be considered the secret to happiness.
So, it’s another dull Monday morning. You drag yourself to work and can’t help but wish you were literally anywhere else. You daydream about taking a Caribbean cruise, a romantic getaway to Paris, or maybe even backpacking through Southeast Asia.
Just thinking about your dream vacation can bring a smile to your face. So, it only makes sense to wonder if traveling is the secret to happiness. Spoiler alert: the answer is yes!
Traveling has many short-term and long-term effects that can make you happier. Do you want to know more? Keep reading to discover why traveling is good for your mental wellbeing.
It Reduces Stress
As your pile of work continues to grow, you may be feeling a bit stressed. When your boss reprimands you for not having a project done on-time or your kids are being extra rambunctious, you probably feel the stress getting worse and worse.
When your life is that hectic, it can seem impossible to find time to de-stress and focus on your happiness. But traveling gives you the perfect opportunity to do just that!
You’ll get to forget about your stressful job and busy schedule for a few days and finally get some fresh air to relax and clear your head. Let’s face it — nothing is more relaxing than a nice spa day or lounging on the beach.
It Boosts Your Confidence
Of course, vacations aren’t all stress-free. Chances are, you’ll come across a few problems on your trip. Maybe you forgot to renew your passport (you can read more now about passport renewal here) or maybe you got lost and couldn’t find your hotel.
Solving these problems can be much harder when you’re in an unfamiliar city or country. But you’ll inevitably find a solution. And when you do, you’ll feel more confident in yourself and your happiness will increase as a result.
You’ll Have Tons of Great Stories
Do people ever tell you these amazing stories from their life? Most of the time, their stories involve a recent trip or vacation. You can’t help but feel a mix of envy and embarrassment that you don’t have any similar stories to share.
However, traveling will give you loads of stories to tell — both the good and the bad. You’ll come across as more interesting to others. Watching someone listening intently to your story can make you feel good which, of course, can make you happier.
It Makes You More Creative
When was the last time you did something creative? If you tend to spend your free time in front of the TV or scrolling through social media, you may want to change that.
Creativity can actually make you happier. So, carving out some time to paint, play music, or any other creative outlet you can think of can improve your emotional wellbeing.
But where does traveling come into play?
Well, traveling can be filled with tons of creative activities, such as taking a cooking or dancing class. But the real impact is that travel itself actually makes you more creative.
Extra neuropathways are built when you have new experiences — something that travel is full of. These new neuropathways can increase your creativity.
When you come home, you may feel more interested in finding a regular creative outlet which can increase your long-term happiness.
It Boosts Your Vitamin D Intake
If you’re like most people, you probably spend most of your days inside. You go from your home to your car to the office. But did you know that a little sunshine can help you crack a smile?
That’s right, the Vitamin D that you get from sunshine can help boost your mood. And when you travel, you’re more likely to do outdoor activities, whether that’s hiking, laying on the beach, or walking around the city.
Just be sure to protect your skin with sunscreen if you plan to be out and about all day. Getting a nasty sunburn sure won’t help you feel happier.
A Little Home Sickness Can Be Good
Many of us tend to overlook how good our lives really are. We let small inconveniences stress us out and forget to appreciate what’s in front of us.
Traveling — especially long-term travel — can leave you feeling a little homesick. When you miss your pets, family, friends, and your nice comfortable bed, you learn to appreciate them more when you return.
Traveling to third-world countries can inspire a similar appreciation when you realize how good your home really is. Learning to love and appreciate what you already have will make you feel happier. Plus, traveling can teach you to focus less on what you don’t have and more on what you do.
You Learn More
It’s no secret that travel is full of learning experiences. You’ll probably do plenty of research on your destination beforehand, and while you’re there, you’ll likely learn a few things too. You may ride a jet ski for the first time, visit a museum, learn to scuba dive, or take part in cultural activities.
Your brain becomes more active when you learn, which can make you happier. Of course, this is even more pronounced when you’re learning about something you find interesting.
You’ve heard the old saying, “laughter in contagious” — and it’s true! Your emotions can be affected by the people around you.
When you’re at work, this may mean your tense coworkers are making your stress levels rise. But when you’re traveling, the people around you will likely be happy. This happiness can rub off on you and boost your mood.
You Can Reconnect with Your Partner
When was the last time you and your partner spent some quality time together? You spend roughly two-thirds of the day either sleeping or working. Running errands, cooking, cleaning, etc. tend to take up a large portion of that last third of your day.
But when you’re traveling, you finally get to spend time together without all the distractions of your daily life. This can help you bond and develop a deeper relationship.
It should come as no surprise that being in a loving and happy relationship can make you feel happier overall.
You Unplug from Social Media
Do you spend your free time scrolling through various social media sites? Sure, it seems harmless, but it can actually affect your mental health and lead to depression.
Traveling gives you the perfect opportunity to unplug from social media for a while. If you travel to a location with constant Wi-Fi access, try to limit your social media use.
Don’t pull your phone out at the dinner table or before getting ready for the day. Focus on where you are and what you’re doing. Once you’re immersed in your vacation, you won’t even miss it!
It Gives You Memories to Look Back On
Do you remember your favorite vacation? Can you still picture it like it was yesterday?
When you’re feeling sad or stressed, take a moment to think about your last vacation. People tend to emphasize the positive aspects of their trip while minimizing any problems that occurred. So, when you look back on your vacation, you’ll likely smile thinking about the good and ignore (or maybe even laugh about) the bad.
Save some of your favorite pictures to your phone as a reminder of your amazing vacation and you’ll feel happier in no time!
There’s Less Comparison
People tend to compare their belongings to what other’s have. You may spend big bucks on a new TV, but then feel envious when you learn your friend’s TV is bigger or better.
But people are far more likely to compare physical objects than vacations.
Afterall, comparing two TVs is easy, but how can you compare a trip to Peru and a trip to Thailand? While they’re both vacations, the destinations and activities are so different that most people don’t even think to compare them.
This means that you come home with amazing memories and experiences that won’t be ruined by comparing your trip to that of your friends or coworkers.
So, Is Traveling the Secret to Happiness?
Yes! The happiness traveling brings you isn’t just limited to reducing stress for a few days. It has many positive effects on your emotional health that can make you feel happier for years to come.
So what are you waiting for? Start planning your next trip and experience the secret to happiness!
Are you strapped for cash? Check out our money saving blog page to help you save up for your next vacation.