Health Advocate Blog

Ask A Health Advocate: How can I avoid being stressed out during my vacation?

Vacation is the perfect time to unwind and leave your daily stressors behind. During this relaxing time, avoid letting work demands or poor planning get in the way of enjoying your trip. Follow these tips to ensure that your vacation will be as peaceful as possible:

Pack early, pack light: Packing at the last minute is always stressful. Make a list of all the key items that you’ll need and gather them a few days before your trip. If you are taking any medication, make sure that you have enough for the entire trip. Don’t overpack your suitcase with unnecessary clothes, as it will make it difficult for you to find what you need. Plus, you might be faced with extra baggage fees for overweight luggage.

Leave the computer at home: Everyone can benefit from a digital detox. Once you start reading your emails, it can be difficult to pull away and clear your mind. If you absolutely need to work during your trip, set a defined period of time to check your work email. For example, you could dedicate one hour to work each morning. Otherwise, put up an out-of-office message and enjoy your time off!

Organize your itinerary before you leave: Call your hotel concierge ahead of time to get information about local activities and restaurants. Coordinate with your travel companions to pick out activities and dining options for your stay. Choose activities that you enjoy doing, and don’t feel obligated to see every tourist attraction. If you are traveling with friends or extended family, determine which activities you will do together and which ones you will do on your own so that there are no surprises or disappointments.

Budget ahead of time: Running out of money during your trip isn’t fun for anyone. Once you book your travel arrangements and accommodations, determine how much you can afford for activities and meals. If you are on a tight budget, look for free and low-cost activities. Paying off credit card bills for months or years after an extravagant trip is stressful, and isn’t worth it!

Engage in physical activities: Exercise can help lower stress and make it easier for you to relax. Incorporate a few fun activities like tennis, swimming, or hiking into your itinerary.

Be strategic with your work schedule: If possible, don’t book any important meetings the day before or after your trip. This will give you time to take care of loose ends before you leave and to catch up once you return. Give yourself a little time to settle back in and get organized.

With the proper planning and mindset, you can enjoy your vacation to its fullest. Bon voyage!

If you’re a Health Advocate member with access to the Wellness Coaching program, reach out to your Wellness Coach for more information on how to avoid vacation-related stress.

Have a question for a Health Advocate? Email, and your question may be the topic of an upcoming “Ask a Health Advocate” column!