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5 Ways Travelling Improves Your Mental Health

ANGELA MCLEAN

There are more perks to travel than we could ever count, but have you considered its benefits on your mental health? It’s true—multiple studies have linked the positive effects of travel to improved mental health and well-being.

Day trips, weekend adventures, and extended getaways all provide opportunities to relax and rejuvenate (and if you play your dates right, escape the bitter winter cold). With today being Bell Let’s Talk Day, an annual initiative to help end the stigma surrounding mental illness, scroll through the top mental health benefits of travel and start planning your next vacay.

 

Travel stimulates your creative juices

Stuck in a mental rut? You might be due for a holiday. A 2018 article in Psychology Today described how travel can improve your mental cognition and lead to increased creativity that will follow you home. You may also be able to apply any knowledge you gain through your travels to future projects, such as information about foreign cultures or local landmarks. To be fair, working from the beach also doesn’t sound too bad at this time of year.

 

Travel challenges your mind

In addition to boosting your creativity, travel can change the way you view your day-to-day routine. We typically find ourselves more alert and connected when we’re hit with the sensory overload that comes with being somewhere new. This is because sightseeing and exploring different cultures gives our spirits a natural boost. To prove it, a study of a group of teachers found that their work engagement significantly increased after returning from a vacation, while their burnout significantly decreased. The time away helps you refresh and fills you with great stories to share.

 

Travel helps you get to know yourself better

The rise in popularity of wellness trips and retreats underscores the benefits of “checking out.” Having a flexible schedule and stepping away from stress and distractions allows you to push yourself to new limits and reflect on what’s really important. You might find a new hobby, which could lead to a different career path or side hustle, or discover a fresh perspective on a past situation. The possibilities are endless. Travelling also presents opportunities for you to find your independence through unique challenges, spontaneous plans, and increased freedom. Break out of your comfort zone with small steps such as dining solo or staying at a hostel. If these ideas make you nervous, check out Much Creator Alayna Joy’s helpful videos.

 

Travel allows you to escape

Think of having writer’s block—sometimes you need to take a break and let your brain breathe. Often, those small pauses can lead you to the biggest breakthroughs. In the same way, a short trip can do wonders by giving you a chance to destress and refocus so you can get back to performing your best. It also reminds you that there’s more to life than the little bubble you may feel trapped in. In other words, go out, explore, and fall in love with the world again.

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Kickin back in Bali like… 🤗

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Travel gives you something to look forward to (and that equates to happiness)

Counting down the days to your departure is one of the most fun parts of the travel experience. In fact, a recent study indicated we gain longer-lasting happiness from anticipating a vacation than a new material purchase, such as a car or clothes. So, perhaps money can buy happiness after all—just spend it wisely.

Bell Let’s Talk Day is an annual initiative to help end the stigma surrounding mental illness. You can take part in Bell Let’s Talk Day today—Send a text message or make a mobile or long distance call using Bell Media products, tweet with the hashtag #BellLetsTalk, use the share a Facebook image frame or the Snapchat Bell Let’s Talk filter. Each time you do this, Bell will donate 5¢ to Canadian mental health initiatives.

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