With Labor Day around the corner most of you are returning from your summer vacations. You have spent the sunny days breathing in the ocean air, basking in the warm rays of the sun and eating delicious food made for your enjoyment. You probably feel glorious! Now all this has come to an end and you are back at work. With the last unpacked beach towel most people will fall back into their daily routine – the same routine that causes them to be stressed and exhausted. Let’s break this pattern and preserve the carefree and happy feelings that you had on vacation. Here are 5 things you did on vacation that you should keep doing everyday!
1. Spend more time outside:
Most people spend their summer vacation outside: Lying on the beach or strolling around the streets of a beautiful city. When you come back home you spend your days sitting at a desk, commuting in a train, and even exercising indoors at the gym. Thousands of research studies have found that increased time outside increases happiness so let’s get outside more!
- Take a break at work and go for a 15 minute walk,
- Walk home instead of talking the train,
- Gather the family for a dinner on the deck instead of around the dinner table.
Even 5 more minutes outside will increase your mood. In this case there is no such thing as too much fresh air.
2. Enjoy your meals:
Vacation destinations usually provide a quality dining experiences. As vacationers, you enjoy delicious meals that take you on a journey and satiate our bodies and minds. However, on a day-to-day basis you are so busy with so many responsibilities that you focus on quick, simple and often boring meals.
- Make a plan to eat out at a high quality restaurant at least once a week during your non-work hours.
- Make your meals beautiful – Chopped on the Food Network places almost as much emphasis on presentation as on taste – you should too!
- Enjoy these meals with friends or family.
A bonus to this is that when you stop to enjoy your meal you will eat less yet feel more full.
3. Stop multitasking
This one is not as obvious to most people but it’s crucial. In the mobile cloud-based world you live in today, your work, investments, and other responsibilities can still reach you while you are on vacation. Yet most people won’t do work on the beach or at the museum or over dinner. Barring an emergency that requires immediate attention, most people will allocate a short period of time to answer their emails or respond to phone calls – they won’t do it all day. However, day-to-day most people over multi-task all the time. You might check work emails over dinner with the family, take calls from clients while at the gym and think about projects during your dates with a significant other. If you want to stay rested, slow down on the multi-tasking and let your brain rest.
4. Get up and move!
You might not be working out while on vacation but you are moving all day. You are swimming, walking and maybe even playing a sport (tennis, golf). After vacation most people’s activity decreases as they are sitting behind a desk. Even if you go to the gym several times a week your movement is forced and structured. Try to find time to move more leisurely. Take a walk outside after work (you will be tackling #1 and #4 in one!)
5. Spend more time with those you love
You wouldn’t go on vacation with people you don’t like and once on vacation most people avoid those folks that bother them. However, day-to-day most people are not so lucky. At work you might have to deal with people you don’t like and even at social outings such as happy hour you might be surrounded by strangers. By the time you are getting home you probably want to hide away in your bedroom for some peace and quiet. Fight the urge to hibernate! Studies have shown that those people that spend time with friends and family are happier than those that are alone. So call your best friends and invite them for dinner. If you typically have a quiet dinner with just your spouse, call the family and have a party mid-week instead!