Written by Nancy Lova
Image by @hellokiaraa
Often when thinking of vacations, we assume there will be an element of relaxation but how often do we actually prioritise our mental health as the reason for our trip? Girls holidays, party weekenders and city breaks filled with sightseeing are fun but can leave us craving another trip to recover from the initial one!
Now I’m no healthcare professional but speaking from experience, I have seen the benefits of jetting off to improve my mental wellbeing and recommend everyone should consider doing the same at least once. Life can feel like a rat race with a thousand mental tabs open all at once so it’s absolutely crucial to find time to pause and escape from it all even for just a little while to recenter and find balance.
In this article I’ll explain the reasons why you should make your next trip a mental wellness vacation along with a few examples to get you started.
A new healthy lifestyle and well-developed routine is needed
For many of us, the only routine we have is the one provided from our jobs. You clock in, do your shift then clock out and any sort of lifestyle before and after work can be random, sporadic or non existent and such a life can be overwhelming. Starting a new healthy lifestyle and routine helps to improve our mental wellbeing and take back control of our lives.
A nonnegotiable for me each day before I start any work is to go for a walk. Not only is this a form of exercise but also a release on my mind so that I’m clear and content for the day ahead. This all started from a trip to Seville where I unintentionally did 20,000 steps a day and whilst of course I’m not doing 20k a day back home, I am however in the healthy habit of going for a long daily stroll. Kick start a new routine with a yoga and walking retreat in Ibiza! A fine example is Nobu Hotel Ibiza Bay where a team of Island experts are on hand to provide a breathtaking hiking experience curated with hidden caves, spectacular views, natural Jacuzzis and meditation. Sounds like the perfect trip to take next!
Reduce stress and anxiety through spiritual awakening
Spirituality may not be for everyone especially as there is a plethora of beliefs and ideologies, but hear me out. I’m not talking about religion but more about finding comfort in a force greater than us which can act as our safety blanket. It’s hard trying to figure life’s complexities out on your own and even after you’ve tried morning runs, healthy eating or journaling, you still can’t shake off the stress and anxiety. This is when surrendering to something bigger, can help. For me, this is God but for you, this may be something else.
A place I will never tire speaking about which offers a transformative trip, is India. I visited India during a turbulent time yet with no expectation, I left a different woman to who I was when I arrived.
Spend time waking up before sunrise, being still, practicing gratitude, visiting temples and surrounding yourself with wise locals and see if you don’t feel like you’ve connected with a divine power and your stress levels haven’t gone down. Such trips have a way to install trust in the unseen and the belief that everything is going to be ok. Fabulous places to stay like Taj Hotels offer holistic programmes to nourish and rejuvenate the mind and spirit as a way to reduce stress and personally, I find this to be a brilliant addition when looking to awaken your spirituality and faith.
Give back to yourself so you can give yourself to others
In order to be a great partner, parent, sibling, friend and all round person, you have to feel great! How many times have you caught yourself irritated and snapping at others, walking around like an energy vampire? We’ve all been there. Yes, there may be challenges which requires more work but for some, it’s simply because we haven’t checked in on ourselves, we haven’t made ourselves a priority in a while and now we’re drained. This is why you’ve got to give back to yourself first so that you can give to others and a wonderful way in doing so is through a solo spa holiday at Lake Como.
Due to its picturesque lake views, an array of lake-front lidos and surrounding nature, Lake Como is a renowned choice for wellness breaks. Restore balance and harmony through nourishing meals, morning walks and daily swims along with lush spa treatments such as at the Grand Hotel Tremezzo, a luxurious 5* hotel providing the finest spa experiences. Indulge in a range of treatments and massages, Hammam, a dip in the infinity pool and even a spot of yoga. An absolute wellness haven this is!