Incorporating Wellness into your Journey
“Wellness” is a popular buzzword at the moment, perhaps conjuring visions of yoga classes and spa visits, but the reality of a wellness-focused journey is much more personal. For me, a yoga class or a massage is a great way to relax – but it’s not necessarily what I want to do when I’m on a once-in-a-lifetime trip to a new place. My idea of journey-based wellness is discovering a new cocktail, or having unstructured time to wander around completely on my own, or visiting a local market to do some people-watching, or trying (a probably ill-advised quantity of questionable) new street foods.
For some people, journey-based wellness can mean indulging in spa time they don’t get to enjoy at home. For others, it can mean trying an adrenaline-inducing activity like climbing or rafting. For still others, it may just mean finding some time to be alone. Whatever your personal relaxation style, I’d encourage you to try three things to incorporate wellness into your next travel experience:
Push out of your comfort zone. If you’re someone who doesn’t typically engage in physical excursions, push your limits with a gentle hike, or a bicycle or kayaking excursion. If you’re someone who usually hangs back and observes, try striking up a conversation with a local, or a fellow traveler. Test yourself by trying something you wouldn’t usually do. You might surprise yourself, and you’ll definitely make some memories!
Get into nature. We spend a lot of time in front of our screens. Make it a point to get outside, whether your idea of outside is the beaches of Rio or a trail through the Andes Mountains. Reconnect with nature.
Whatever you’re doing, be fully present. When you visit a highlight destination, you’ll almost certainly spot a traveler who hops out of their car, snaps a few selfies, and hops back in, barely looking up from their phone. By all means, take photos! They make some of the best souvenirs. But once you do, put down the camera for a while and really look around. Wherever you are, whatever you’re doing, odds are you won’t have this exact experience ever again. Enjoy it. These are moments to savor.