1. A holiday reduces stress and increases overallwell-being
It might surprise you that holidays actually lower your stress levels? It can also increase your well-being for up to 5 weeks after the actual holiday!
A study carried out in Austria looked at 53 employees of a manufacturing company. They measured the stress & well-being levels 10 days before and 3 days after a holiday. At 3 days after the holiday, sleep quality and mood had increased than before the holiday. A follow up on these participants 5 weeks later showed that the participants still showed less physical complaints. Particularly in terms of sleep quality and overall stress levels. This study therefore indicates that holiday’s promote and increase our well-being on a short term basis. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/10912359
2. It can affect your personality
The ‘Big Five’ model is one of the most famous personality models. This model consists of five traits; openness, agreeableness, extroversion, neuroticism and conscientiousness.
A study carried out by Dr Julia Zimmermann and Franz Neyer set out to test whether travel affects our personality. They created two groups of German students. One group stayed in Germany for the semester. The other group was sent abroad for this time. Prior to starting each participant was asked to complete a Big Five personality test. Once they were returned they had to take the test again. The two results were then compared.
The results were fascinating! The study found that the group that had studied abroad scored higher in extroversion. Those who had been abroad were found to have higher engagement in social interactions. The same group also scored higher in openness, agreeableness, and conscientiousness. Zimmermann and Neyer found that as these students had to engage with strangers as they travelled. This encouraged their levels of openness to increase.
Travel makes us look at situations from a different point of view. This forces us out of our comfort zone. Which in turn stretches aspects of our personality. In my view this make us much more effective at dealing with situations and people. http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/jopy.12063/abstract
3. Improves your mental health
Mental health levels can be improved by taking holidays. This is particularly the case for women. The Wisconsin’s Rural Women’s Health Study looked at a range of 1500 women. These women took varying amounts of holidays over a range of years. They found that women who only took holidays once every six years had higher levels of depression. This was higher than those that took holidays once or twice a year. The women who regularly took holidays were less stressed, depressed or tired than those who did not. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16218311?ordinalpos=12&itool=EntrezSystem2.PEntrez.Pubmed.Pubmed_ResultsPanel.Pubmed_RVDocSum
4. It strengthens relationships
The same study in Wisconsin found another reason to travel. They found that women who have more holidays are also more satisfied in their marriage. Travel creates personal psychological benefits which improved their satisfaction in their home lives. This also drove greater performance at work.
Positivity Experiment #4
Hopefully you have been following my positivity experiments on my blog & vlog. I decided to book a holiday after reading all these benefits. I travelled to Salzburg in Austria with my sister in law at the end of last year. We had an amazing time at the Christmas Markets.
Please visit Salzburg. It is such a magical city, especially in the winter time. We had so much fun. I came home, refreshed, relaxed and ready to start the new year. This was my most successful positivity experiment yet as every time I think of our trip and look at the pictures I feel happy!
Don’t delay, get that holiday booked! Check for my next positivity experiment the science of self-care coming very soon