Reduce your vacation stress
May 23, 2019


Now that summer is here, excitement is in the air to get out and travel to favorite places or make new adventures with family or friends. Do you have a family vacation coming up that you have been looking forward to for months? Although vacations can be very fun and relaxing, they may also bring stress into our lives. It can be a lot of work to plan a trip and make it fun for each person, it is also very easy to over book ourselves to where it feels like a scheduled job. The last thing you want to do is make your vacations stressful and filled of too many plans. No matter where you will be going or whom you will be spending time with you want to relax with no worries or stress. Consider these tips.

PLAN- The best way to do that is know some of the things you want to do before you go. Keep in mind what others might want to do on the trip as well. If you are going as a family, it is best to do something for each person, allowing them to pick something will make everyone content. You do not want to get there and then try to figure out what you might want to do, this can cause stress early in your trip. Loosely plan your trip but stay flexible as we all know rain and sickness can sometimes get in the way.

WORKLOAD- Make plans to have items at home taken care of while you are gone feeding pets, watering plants or picking up the mail. If you have any lingering projects, wrap them up before you go. This way they won't be hanging over your head while you're gone or waiting for you when you return.

TIME- While you are planning, make sure you are giving yourself enough time to take in everything you will be experiencing. Consider planning for down time. This can be good for you especially when you live a day-to-day life working in a stressful environment. Let yourself loose and allow your mind and body to breathe and really relax.

ORGANIZATION- Stay organized and make sure you make a list of everything you need before you go. It's helpful to start packing a week before your trip. Then, you can make a list of things that need to be packed last minute.

ROUTINES- While you are away, keep a regular schedule for the kids maintaining a routine, such as bedtime or nap time, for them, will help make for a more pleasant experience.

TECHNOLOGY- Be technology free while on vacation this will be a great way to reduce stress and a good way to reconnect with your friends and family.

Take advantage of stay-cations or day-cations. This will help lessen money and stress. My family enjoys lots of little long weekends throughout the summer instead of one week long vacation. Do not make yourself feel like you need a vacation from your vacation. Life is not perfect and neither are we as humans. If something goes wrong or not the exact way you think it should do not stress about it, life will go on. Allow yourself to be happy and free from the work and the stress you are leaving behind. Your mind and body will thank you for it.

Amanda Bohlen is the new family and consumer science educator for The Ohio State University Extension in Washington County. She received her bachelor's in family and consumer science education from Ohio University and her master's in curriculum and instruction from Ohio Valley University. For the last seven years she has been in the classroom teaching high school students' financial education, child development, nutrition and culinary skills.


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