For many people, travel represents excitement, anticipation, and relaxation, but for others, the word vacation is synonymous with anxiety.
This is especially true of children who may be overwhelmed by the prospect of going somewhere unfamiliar and giving up the already limited control they have over the world around them. However many adults also suffer from vacation anxiety because they are natural worriers.
There are many ways to reduce anxiety. Some have found comfort in CBT or mindfulness exercises. Others have looked at THC/CBD vape kits (https://getkush.io/product-category/vapes/thc-vape-starter-kits/) as those are said to help relieve stress, anxiety, and insomnia. Sometimes it is as simple as writing a list and checking it twice.
Often the answer to vacation anxiety lies in the preparation. Try these 4 strategies so everyone can enjoy your next trip to the fullest.
One reason that people often experience vacation anxiety is because they are left out of the planning process. Rather than deciding you’re going on vacation, planning it, and then telling the others, consider holding a family meeting and talking about what everyone wants. If everyone feels that they have input on the vacation process, they may feel more excited and less anxious about embarking on the trip.
Create A Narrative
We often develop anxiety when we craft worst case scenario narratives about an event – and we assuage that anxiety by remembering that these are just stories. You can rewrite them with a happier ending.
As adults, we can rewrite these stories in our minds, but with kids, it can help to develop what are known as “social stories” about your trip. You can visit your booking website and print out photos of the hotel, of places you’ll go, even of different types of transit you’ll take. Compile them into a booklet and review your travel plans with your kids so that they know what to expect.
Managing anxiety can be difficult specifically because it seems huge – everything about this new thing seems scary. Narrowing that anxiety down and figuring out what in particular is causing that tension can really help. Try to elicit specifics from your children about what they’re worried about – are they scared of flying, are they worried that their pet will miss them, are they anxious about getting lost? When you can address the specific fear, you can diminish the overall anxiety.
Pack And Prepare
As the trip approaches, focus on concrete things. Include everyone in the packing process so that they can see that they’ll have all the things they need. Ask what might be missing and make lists if you are comforted by visual reminders. You can also pack a travel bag with soothing items and activities for the flight or car ride. Having these little pieces of home can make the trip easier.
Adults tend to feel travel anxiety over topics like expenses, foreign language destinations, and flight delays, while children tend to experience a much more nebulous kind of anxiety. They just don’t know what lies ahead because they’re often cut out of the process. Over time, this anxiety will lessen, but for the time being take things one step at a time. They will have fun – you just have to help them get their.