This was a year of throwbacks – throwbacks to epic college trips with your besties, spontaneous road trips with the family and even some seemingly routine visits to your hometown. The events of 2020 have probably had you sighing over precious moments on the road, sealed in photographs. And without the healthy intervention of a weekend getaway, the pandemic has forced many to unpack turbulent mental baggage.
By continuing to stay indoors for everyone’s safety, anxiety and stress have become uninvited guests in many lives. And the current pandemic has aggravated mental health issues across the world, ultimately highlighting the importance of travel. Travel is so much more than filter-perfect photos or live videos. To travel to a new place is to stumble on discoveries of the self. By helping you distance yourself from the daily grind, it is like pressing the reset button on life.
So, this Mental Health Day, observed on 10 October every year, let’s take a look at just how travel has a positive impact on your mental health.
1. A break from the daily grind
No points for guessing what grabbed all your attention over the past months – screens. Whether it was catching up on Netflix, mindlessly scrolling through your phone or tuning into zoom meetings, your eyes were fixated, while the mind wandered. Even the boundaries between work and home blurred, considering so many have been working from home for months now. Changing your surroundings will give you the break you deserve from ‘work from’ and ‘work for’ home. A short trip is not only good for your physical well-being but is beneficial for emotional prosperity too.
2. Rejuvenate and reinvent yourself
One of the most exciting parts about travel is to watch the city disappear in the distance along with those to-do lists. Basking in moments of peace, far from the hustle and bustle of work life is a rejuvenating experience. But more importantly, the new experiences you gain on your travels can expand your mind, bring new perspectives and help you become more aware of the things around you. A well-travelled person is often more in touch with their creativity and their mind, which can benefit their professional life too.
3. An instant mood uplifter
To say that this year has been stressful will be the understatement of the decade. For many people, spending extended periods at home could have caused friction between family members and anxiety of having their movement restricted. Not only does getting out eliminate that feeling of being ‘trapped’ but even planning a short trip gives you some kind of release because it is something to look forward to. The anticipation of travel, seeing something new and experiencing something different can increase feelings of happiness and excitement, and these can do a world of good to your overall mood and mental state.
4. Find inner peace and your true self
As the realities of life overtake your once flourishing dreams, travel can revive dormant aspirations. It gives you time to engage with your true self. Being in a new place, learning about new cultures and tasting new cuisines is not only a physical experience but a profoundly psychological one. It helps you look at life in a new way, even when you’re back at your desk job.
While the pandemic took a few months away from us, it has also made us rethink travel choices – to appreciate local tourism, come up with sustainable travel hacks and realise the nourishing benefits of being a traveller. So, whether it is a relaxing staycation or a road trip, sufficing your wanderlust can work wonders for your emotional and mental health.
However, whatever your plan, remember that the world is still fighting off a serious pandemic, which makes it essential to take every precaution when you are travelling. This means wearing masks, carrying sanitizers and other essentials without fail.
Additionally, it is best to travel local and explore landscapes closer to home. This becomes a possibility when you’re travelling in the safety of your MG Hector Plus. Powered with a robust engine and infallible safety features, this SUV can traverse tricky terrains, making it easy to get out into the great outdoors. And it is equipped with an infotainment system that not only lets you navigate your way through the unknown but also keeps you entertained with awesome travel playlists on your journey.
Most people think they need to travel because they’re bored with their lives. However, you need to travel to lead a more meaningful life. It helps dispel the rigours of mundane routines and replaces them with bouts of positivity. Remember, when all it takes is readjusting your rearview mirror, happiness cannot be far behind.