If you are getting stuck in your thoughts, not making headway on a problem or being generally unproductive at work – take a break and head out without any hang-ups. Doesn’t have to be a long break – trust me short ones (even a day outdoors) can let you live more and find yourself more thoughtful at work after.
Human brain needs constant stimulation and more of the same everyday can literally make you brain dead. Take a step back, find the door and head out for no purpose, but just to breathe and experience new things. Travel is extremely therapeutic – it can increase your energy levels, help you think better and clearer, and make you happy – all the ingredients of an active and healthy mind.
Here’s how the travel therapy works and lets you be more productive:
Energize and Re-boot
All systems living or otherwise need a re-boot. The re-boot helps clear out the peripheral non-sense and re-calibrate for efficiency. It’s just what travel helps you do. When you head out, you take a pause on the routine and live a life away from the daily humdrum. (Btw, when you travel, do yourself a favor – don’t take work with you! Defeats the purpose.) Travel helps clear your mind, forget the existing arrangement of intertwined issues in your head, and readies you for a fresh take on the work problems when you get back to them.
Think Less and Observe More
In new surroundings, you observe more and think less. As travel doesn’t come with an overhang of a purpose, it makes you notice things more. Observing more and thinking less is awesome, because it gives you ability to be more rational and objective. And quite often, observations themselves present ingenious solutions than forceful thoughts.
Travel is great practice at improving your powers of observation. The newness of the experience makes you more perceptive and open to new things. Taking this back to work, you’ll find yourself more empowered and resolved to approach problems better and find more effective solutions.
What I love the most about travel is the fact, that it shows the smallness of your being in contrast to the ‘scheme’ or ‘anarchy’ of the world and universe. The realization is very alleviating and liberating. Once you stop obsessing over the small problems of work and life, and realize how little or no difference you make in the grand scheme of things, it puts your mind and ease and lets you be more in the moment. You are able to kick out stress, relax more and be more objective about your actions and decisions. It’s a lovely feeling!
Experience More to Think Out-of-the-Box
When your surroundings stay the same, the mind is not stimulated enough to make new connections to get fresh ideas. Travel makes your mind active with all the new sights, sounds and experiences. Traveling to natural destinations especially is very high on positive experiences. The same is true about experiencing new cultures and artistic indulgences.
Your rejuvenated mind, back at work, is willing to make new synaptic connections, think innovatively and with a fresh outlook. This is often all you need to break free from any deadlocks and work out problems.
Additionally, the range of experiences that travel affords also broadens your horizon, letting you create analogies to what you may have seen and find better solutions to problems at work. The principle is simple – you are usually not the first one solving a problem – there are over 7 billion people constantly thinking and many more billions before us who have done the same. Meeting new people, experiencing new places exposes you to a lot of previous thought process that can be very enabling with your own ‘think-through’.
Breathe, Live and Be Happy
Often at work, you forget the basic unit of life, the breath. You breath holds the key to everything. Taking a long deep breath in and out, and feel it flow through every cell of your body is the single most beautiful, aware and relaxing feeling. And it’s not difficult to imagine why we forget breathing at work – the mind is constantly juggling too many thoughts, many of them unnecessary. Travel lets you back up, do nothing and breathe.
As you go from one moment to another while traveling, you are focused on very simple and basic things – finding your way to some place, having a delicious meal, experiencing hot or cold weather – the mind is fairly resolved and focuses on one problem at a time. (Only if you could do this at work!) You can be in the moment and experience it entirely. And if you can just remember to breathe, live a moment at a time, you’ll find yourself extremely relaxed and happy. When you get back, you carry this happiness back to work and can see the same magic unfold.
Feeling Great and Happy After the Break – Now, Manage a Smooth Transition to Work
Travel can be bodily exhaustive, and walking in straight back to work will shock the system. Give yourself a little downtime between your travel and return to work. A few hours in the evening of easy laid back reading or just lightweight planning for the workday ahead works super. It’s usually a good idea to have a night’s sleep between your travel and workday. It helps your mind and body relax and get ready for a fresh start.
I’ve personally found short travel breaks to be the most positive influence on life and work in general. For me, it’s been the most effective way to manage work-life balance, and stay happy and healthy. If you let go of the inertia, and be ready to hit the road for nothing but the love of new experiences and new places, I’d bet that it would become the single most cherished thing in your life.
So, happy traveling and cheers to a gorgeous life!
Image credit – Godot Media Free Stock Photo Gallery