One of the best things you can do for yourself, especially for your mental health, is travel. In fact, according to science, travel makes you a better person by presenting you with chances for introspection that you wouldn’t otherwise have access to.
Although traveling can be thrilling and mentally exciting, it’s crucial that you remember to look after your mental health. Whether you’re traveling with Remote Year or by yourself, it’s always important to look at birthday trip ideas.
Ignoring your needs while traveling, particularly if you’re doing so for an extended period of time, can result in the same problems like burnout and exhaustion that you faced back home. When you’re traveling, put self-care first because we care about how you’re doing. We’ve listed the top ten techniques to maintain mental health when traveling the world below.
Take your time and move slowly.
If you try to do too much at once while traveling long-term, you could easily burn yourself out. Moving from place to place too quickly is a great way to get tired and miss out on the subtleties of the local culture.
We cherish our 1-month, 4-month, and 12-month Journeys for this reason. Spending a month or even longer in a place allows you to experience new things, establish a pattern, and maintain a healthy work-life balance without having to worry about where you’ll be in three days. You may relax and take in all that the culture has to offer instead of cramming a lot of activities into one week, which will be much better for your mental health.
Make contact with your loved ones.
When you’re traveling, put self-care first because we care about how you’re doing. We’ve listed the top ten techniques to maintain mental health when traveling the world below.
Meeting new people is one of the best parts of traveling, but if all your interactions are superficial rather than deep, you risk feeling alone and lonely. Since humans are social creatures, feeling alone can make you worried and unhappy very quickly.
A strong feeling of community will be created by nurturing the significant relationships you do make and keeping in touch with the people you love and trust. You might schedule regular phone calls with significant others in your life as you travel so that you have a strong base of support no matter where you are in the world. Maintain your video chat appointments with your therapist if you are!
While not qualified mental health specialists, our Community Leaders are always available to provide a sympathetic ear or direct you to mental health resources as part of Remote Year’s community-focused travel programs. There are many other tools available in our special mental health Slack channel, where you may get support from other members of the Remote Year community.
Participate in your community
A great approach to feel connected and help those in need is by having a positive impact on your neighborhood and developing close relationships with other people. When it comes to positive impact activities like building homes in Colombia and volunteering to work with LGBTQ+ youngsters in Mexico City, previous program participants have experienced a great sense of satisfaction.
If you’re feeling alone, supporting a neighborhood cause and being honest with your neighbors about how you’re feeling will make you feel more supported. Connecting with individuals around you will significantly enhance your mental health and result in a more fulfilling existence overall.
Include self-care in your schedule.
Depending on the type of tourist you are, you might like to fill your schedule with activities so you can take advantage of everything a place has to offer. Since there is a sense of urgency associated with these activities, FOMO, or the fear of missing out, is particularly intense when you are traveling. What if there isn’t another opportunity? Isn’t the whole point of traveling to have new experiences?
Even while doing new things is fantastic, if you don’t schedule time for self-care, you could start to feel worn out and even resentful of your surroundings. During your travels, give yourself some alone time! This could take the form of booking a day at the spa, staying in to catch up on TV shows and movies, or simply unwinding on the beach without thinking about work or other obligations.
If you engage in any activity that recharges you, especially if you’re on a lengthy trip, you’ll stay mentally sharp.
Despite the fact that drinking enough water is crucial for both your physical and mental health, studies reveal that only 75% of Americans do so. The dehydration levels are similar in many other nations. Dehydration in general can exacerbate illnesses like depression and anxiety, and even minor dehydration can lead to problems for you like poor energy and confusion.
The most effective (and environmentally responsible) approach to stay hydrated is to invest in a water bottle that you can carry with you wherever you go. You could buy a bottle with a built-in filter if you’re worried about the water’s quality. Whatever method you use to drink water, remember that staying hydrated will increase your energy and improve your mood.
Eat balanced meals and snacks.
Similar to drinking enough of water, eating well when traveling is also very good for your mental health. That is much easier said than done, though. There are times when it is easier to pick up unhealthy snacks at the railway station or you see something on the menu that looks wonderfully great but isn’t particularly healthy.
You don’t have to deprive yourself of anything, which is fantastic news! All you have to do to maintain balance in your life is choose wisely when it comes to what to consume. Try purchasing almonds, fruit, or dark chocolate at the station rather than going for chips and candy. Enjoy that delicious dinner, and then follow it up with a lighter breakfast or lunch to balance it out.
Visit regional markets to stock up on fresh ingredients as another way to eat better while traveling. To reduce the amount of eating out without sacrificing the experience, we advise everyone to explore the local markets. In addition to helping you eat healthier, using your kitchen to create a dinner with your new traveling companions is a fantastic opportunity to meet people from the area and pick up some new words.
Practice being mindful.
Being mindful means keeping your attention in the here and now while allowing yourself some mental and emotional breathing room. It enables you to be aware of and accept your ideas and feelings without being overburdened.
Your stress levels, blood pressure, and any signs of anxiety or depression can all be reduced by practicing mindfulness. Being mindful is very crucial to keep in mind when traveling, especially if anything upsetting is happening to you.
The best thing about mindfulness practice is that you can do it anywhere, at any time. Exercises like yoga, meditation, and breathing can all help you become more conscious. Many people appreciate attending organized retreats as a means to practice mindfulness in the company of a warm group of people.
Simply sitting quietly for a few minutes and becoming conscious of your present thoughts and feelings is the simplest method to begin practicing mindfulness. As you center yourself, acknowledge them without passing judgment and then just let them go.
Plan your mental wellness.
To develop a mental health plan for any significant events that arise while you are traveling, you should speak with your therapist and/or doctor before you leave.
If you need to take medicine for a mental health problem, you should also speak with your doctor about how you will manage your prescription while traveling.
Asking your therapist whether they will see you virtually or enrolling in an online mental health platform to receive therapy from anywhere may be helpful if you routinely see a therapist and are going to be away for several weeks or months.
If you’re planning to participate in a Remote Year program, our safety advisor has some information for you below:
You have complete access to our safety advisor, International SOS, as a participant in your program. They will assist in providing you with information about specialist medical facilities, the availability of prescriptions, and the legal status of your prescription in each of the places you will be traveling. We also advise you to seek guidance from your embassy and your travel insurance provider before you depart.
Establish a new, effective travel schedule.
Having a regular routine can be good for your mental health, whether you’re catching the sunrise in Croatia or turning off in Cape Town, but you can also benefit from changing it up. Even though most individuals see traveling as a break from their regular routine, you can still benefit from having a pattern while you’re on the road.
Even if your days are very different from one another, a healthy morning routine can help you feel in control. This is especially true for those who experience mental health issues. Consistent routines have been found to lessen anxiety and treat the symptoms of depression.
You won’t likely follow the same morning routine while traveling as you would at home. All you need to do is establish consistency in your morning routine; it doesn’t need to be difficult. This could be eating the same meal every day, cleaning your teeth at the same time, or rising at the same time every day.
Live in the now and be present.
This is so much more difficult than it seems! Your attention can quickly be diverted in a million different places when you always have access to everyone thanks to smartphones. You can be distracted from appreciating the beauty right in front of you by doing something as simple as posting a picture of a stunning sunset to your Instagram story.
Of course you want to document every amazing moment of your trip, but if you put your phone down and try to enjoy the moment, you’ll start to love it much more. These memories will last a lifetime, and the more absorbed you are in them, the sweeter they will be.
Your mental health should always come first, no matter where you are in the globe. Your entire life will improve if you prioritize taking care of yourself; you’ll be happier, more effective, and experience greater fulfillment.