Taking a road trip can be rather stressful and overwhelming. There are ways to mitigate this problem and they are mostly about preparing for the trip beforehand and knowing when it’s time to rest and relax a bit.
It’s usually the small things that make the trip easier and don’t hesitate to focus on those and spoil yourself during the trip. It will make the experience more memorable and enjoyable but also keep you safe by allowing you to focus on the road when you need to.
Make sure you have the proper documents
In order to drive your car abroad, you’ll need an international drivers license. There are fines to pay if you’re caught without and in some countries you may even get your car impounded. The document is easy to get and there’s no reason to put yourself in a difficult spot over it.
There’s a small fee that you’ll need to cover and an international permit is issued based on the national license. The permit is valid for a year, as long as your national license is and that should keep you covered for most tourist trips.
Make plans to check in at home
Worrying about or simply missing your family at home is one of the main causes of stress while traveling. Make arrangements to check in with your family every once in a while and you’ll be able to relax and enjoy the trip.
If you’re leaving kids at home, it’s best to find a way to stay a part of their routine and call them before bedtime or whenever your call would best fit with the arrangements you’ve made at home. If needed you can also establish an emergency line so that you can be contacted no matter what.
Leave time for breaks
A short trip is usually filled with activities and plans. Tourists as well as those who travel for work always look for ways to make the most out of their trip and visit as many sites as they can during their stay. This is understandable but rather stressful.
Make sure you leave plenty of time for breaks so that you can wind down and prepare for the next step in your schedule. How often you need to take breaks depends on your own plans and anxiety levels.
Bring a journal
Bringing a journal along to your trip is one of the best things you could do for your mental health. Taking the time at the start or end of each day to write down a few thoughts about your trip and your health overall is a great exercise that allows you to unload and process the experience.
These journals can later become valuable mementos. Going through them years later can help you remember and relive your trip, better than you could otherwise. There’s no need for the journal to be too complicated, it’s enough to write out just a few lines every day.
Dennis Relojo-Howell is the managing director of Psychreg.
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