Getting your tax returns ready. Getting ready to put away the winter stuff and get out the spring stuff. March can be a stressful month. Heck, most months have some elements of stress in them. In reality, it’s usually not the month, by and large, it’s your lifestyle and the collection of choices you’ve made.
But the good thing about it is, since this is a creation of your choices, the cure is also available via your choices.
Chronically working too hard and too long? Can’t plunge into a full vacation? Consider the long weekend. Depart on a Thursday night. Flights are less expensive, traffic is less heavy. Return on a Monday and enjoy the same benefits as the Thursday departure. That leaves three days of pure relaxation in the middle. One warning — this can become addicting.
The best thing about the long weekend, is that the recovery time at work (catching up on emails and voicemails) is nowhere near as challenging as it is on the full-week getaways.
Consider the long weekend by planning it around a cool event. These events typically occur on a Saturday or Sunday. And, with your long weekend, you won’t have to cut the event short to get a jump on travel, or begin your getaway at the crack of dawn. Your travel days can be completely independent of your enjoyment days. Better yet, your selection of flights can often be had with lower prices and better options when you don’t require the first or last flight of the day. If you are driving, you can plan around the peak rush hour times. Many hotels and lodging venues offer the extra days at bargain prices, too.
Another benefit is your vacation days will yield more trips. If you have three weeks of vacation a year, and you keep one of the week’s vacations for shorter trips, that would yield five four-day weekends, for a total of six getaways — that’s one every other month. Long-termers who have six weeks of vacation can get two full-week getaways and 10 four-day weekends, for a getaway every month.
All this is because, on a four-day weekend, 50 percent of the trip requires no use of a vacation day. You can literally double your number of getaways this way. By spreading these vacation days around, the gaps between them get smaller, and my bet is, the stress reduces more quickly and builds to a lower level.
Not only do you reduce stress, you get a nice positive in exchange — memories from a great getaway. It’s the icing on the cake. After all, stressed is “desserts” spelled backward!
Now, look through this issue, and plan your next getaway.