If you’re looking for an excuse to book a vacation soon, we may have some good news – or bad news, depending on how you want to look at it. Several psychologists have given us these warnings signs that mean you need one now.
Splitting Headaches Greet You Every Morning
One of the most obvious signs you need a getaway comes in the form of physical pain – often headaches – that hit you first thing in the morning, when you should feel rested and well.
“Experiencing physical pain indicates that it’s time to book that vacation, as this means the stress is taking a toll on your body,” says London-based mental health expert, Ray Sadoun. “For example, if you frequently wake up with headaches, you may be grinding your teeth in your sleep as a result of stress. Some time away from work will allow your body to heal itself without distractions.”
Money Has Become No Object – But It Should
“Retail therapy” is real – and likely a sign you need to get away from your normal life. Escapism, in whatever form – be that excessive gaming, binge-watching every night, gambling – isn’t bad in and of itself, but the repetitive behavior indicates something is wrong, and you likely need to put that spending money toward a vacation rather than another dozen pairs of shoes.
You’re On a Downward Spiral
Easier said than seen, but downward spiral behavior shows a strong need for rest, separation, and time away. This can be behavior like consistently making bad choices, feeling close to “implosion” (or explosion) on the regular, short-temperedness when you’re usually even-tempered, isolation, and a drop in engagement with others as well as favorite hobbies and activities.
If you or someone you love is experiencing these signs, a vacation or break from work and stressful activities is required. Without that break, you could wind up losing your job, damaging relationships, or worse.
You Just Plain Feel Tired
If everything feels like a chore, even your favorite hang with pals after work or the weekly painting class you take with your BFF, you’re in need of a break from reality and life. A vacation can help infuse joy, energy, and a bit of freedom back into your soul.
Self-Medication Is More Than Just Netflix
Binge-watching Grey’s Anatomy can sometimes be a healthy thing. We all need those guilty pleasures to release stress, help us cry things out, and just helps us break from reality sometimes. But when that de-stressing shifts from things like a glass of wine with Meredith Grey to an entire bottle in an evening, you’re in need of something more. Especially if that bottle becomes a regular thing. That also goes for harder liquor, of course, as well as drugs – even pot – or something else.
Book That Vacation Now
If you’re experiencing any of these signs, or dissociation from work or colleagues and friends, you’ve gained more than a few pounds, or you’re making mistakes at work, you are in need of a vacation as soon as possible.
Even if you can’t take a full week off right now, take a personal day or two. Extend the weekend and head out of town for a camping trip or cheap hotel stay – whatever you can do to change up the scenery and remove yourself from stressors.
If you can take a week off but can’t travel far, find a cheap Airbnb, Vrbo, or cabin on a nearby lake and enjoy some time outdoors, in a new town, or just doing nothing without the pressures of work and life swirling around you. You and your family – and coworkers – will be better off for it.