We all travel for different reasons: searching for adventure, escaping to relax, discovering new cultures, or anything in between. No matter your purpose, you want to make the most of your time away from work and other responsibilities. Here are 5 ways to disconnect while traveling, and make your vacation the best it can be.
1. Keep a Journal
Photos by Unsplash - Lilartsy and Jared Rice
Vacations are exciting, and it’s a given that you’ll want to share the best bits with your friends and family. However, keeping your circle updated 24/7 is truly NOT necessary. I hate to break it to you, but they don’t care if they have to wait a week to hear all about it. In fact, they’ll probably prefer it that way!
That’s not to say you have to keep your excitement to yourself, though. Keeping a travel journal is a wonderful way to keep track of the highlights of your time away, and can even help you remember the little things that make for stronger, more vivid memories. Journaling is also a great way to stay present and mindful while on the road, and you’ll be grateful 5 years from now to have such a special keepsake (far better than any souvenir).
2. Leave the Laptop at Home
Photo by Unsplash - Burst
Easier said than done, but vacation is supposed to be a getaway. Work is most likely a big thing you are trying to get away from, so it’s important to leave it all behind while you’re away.
But, my job is important! My team will collapse without me.
MMM, not true. Your team, clients, or managers are already aware that you’re on vacation (if they aren’t...that’s just ditching), and the appropriate accommodations should be made well before you leave. How do you do that?
Tie up loose ends, don’t leave any emails unanswered. Most importantly, come up with a really good out-of-office response note.
3. Have a Digital Detox
Photos by Unsplash - Toa Heftiba and Christopher Ott
What better way to escape the fast-paced, high-pressure life you lead than by detoxing digitally while away? Here are some things to help you do it:
Steer clear of social media
Why does it matter what anyone else is doing at home? You’re on vacation! Enjoy it fully by leaving social media behind, both sharing and consuming.
Turn off notifications
Your phone lights up hundreds of times each day, and a good majority of them are not important (especially during your time off!). The important stuff will still be there when you’re ready to see it.
Remove apps from your phone
Still don’t think you can’t stick to it? Just remove the apps completely. Keep only what is necessary, such as your banking app or map app.
4. Plan for Your Return
Photos by Unsplash - Jess Bailey and Covene
Nothing is worse than post-vacation dread. All those neglected emails and tasks have to be done eventually! Make a realistic timeline for yourself by preparing in advance. Not only do you need to make sure you’re leaving in a good state, maybe by cleaning the whole house and getting ahead on work, but plan for your return carefully. Set aside time for the day or week after your return to tackle any things that need to be done.
5. Not Everything Needs Photographing
Photo by Unsplash - JE Shoots
It’s a natural instinct while traveling to take a picture of everything. But, that often leaves you with thousands of photos of random things you probably won’t recognize a year from now. Additionally, that many photos take a long time to sort, and it’s unlikely that you’ll have the patience to go through them all once you’ve returned. So then, what was the point of taking them?
Of course you’ll want to capture memories that you can look back on, but capture too many and it will become a chore. Also, you don’t want to be seeing your whole trip through a lens, you want to see it for yourself.
We could all use some opportunities to disconnect, and your vacation time is the perfect excuse.