There’s nothing like the feeling of summertime: the days are longer, the nights are spent outdoors and there’s a good chance you’ll be cashing in on some summer Fridays and taking a summer vacation to anywhere with sun and sand.
That is, unless you’re not.
There are some days that you want to get away but you just can’t. Maybe you already used your vacation days visiting your in-laws for the holidays. Or it could be that your budget is just a bit too tight this year to indulge in all the trips you want to take. Whatever the case may be, everyone needs a break every once in a while. And just because you can’t physically vacay somewhere, that doesn’t mean you can’t give yourself the time off you need.
If you’re looking for a mental getaway, you don’t always need to look so far. Here’s how to give yourself that vacation you need without ever leaving town:
Transform your bathroom into a spa
Ah, spa-day. Who doesn’t love to sweat out stresses in the sauna, relax with a deep tissue massage and indulge in a mani-pedi? Unfortunately, it’s not always easy to find the time to relax and unwind, and we all know that just cannot be rushed. Board certified psychologist Dion Metzger tells us if you can’t make it out to the spa, just DIY in your own home! “It can be a few simple changes like taking a bath instead of a shower, giving yourself a facial mask, lighting candles, dimming the lights or playing soothing spa-like music.” So go grab your favorite products and get ready to say “ahhhh.”
Unplug and disconnect
With everyone constantly connected these days, no wonder we feel like we always need a vacation! If you want to give yourself a mental break, you may need to give yourself a tech one, too. Even if it’s just for a few minutes or for a few hours, turn off the television, put your phone on silent and simply enjoy a few minutes totally and completely electronic-free. Maybe take a few deep breaths and meditate, or go outside for a walk without earbuds. Whatever you need to do to feel like you’re getting an escape, even if you actually aren’t, go ahead and do it.
Binge your favorite TV show
Okay, maybe we don’t necessarily need an excuse to stare endlessly at our computer screens until it asks if we’re still paying attention, but we will surely take one! Metzger informs us that when it comes to giving yourself a mental break, indulging in a little TV may be all the “vacation” you actually need. “I rarely use the word binge in a positive light but for television shows, it gets a pass. If there is a favorite series or even new series that you want to watch, get your popcorn and jump in. It’s a way to take a break from your normal routine and completely submerge yourself in the fantasy world on the screen. As long as it’s a show you enjoy, go for it as a way to unplug. If it makes you laugh, even better.”
Binging on television, however, can only go so far. Dion makes sure to let us know that just like most things, everything is better in moderation. “For bingeing, I mean four to six hours….not 12+. I still want you to sleep and eat.” We’ll take it!
Get the hotel treatment
We all love going on vacation because, for even the smallest amount of time, we get to live somewhere outside our norm. Ever get a thrill just from sinking into a hotel’s warm, comfy sheets or snuggling up in the complimentary bathrobes? These little details of vacationing can make such a huge difference to your relaxation, and yet, you can easily find that in your own home. “The relaxing appeal of hotels is that people love being taken care of,” Metzger says. “Why not bring some of these luxuries to your home? Want fine dining? Find one of your favorite restaurants that delivers to your door. Entertainment? Order a movie that just left the theaters. This is a little more expensive than some of the other mental vacation options but still is likely less than a hotel night’s stay, with a lot of potential for de-stressing.”