- The amount of stress we've had to deal with over the past year has been immense. Not just on personal mental health, but there has been a knock-on effect on our relationships, too.
- So why not use this lockdown period to plan the ultimate romantic getaway, even if it'll only happen in a year or two.
- Plus, there's that saying about the early bird...
We've had to endure the loss of income, health issues and separation from friends and family due to the Covid-19 pandemic. Within this context, many relationships have taken strain.
The past year has had a detrimental effect on our stress levels, and holidays are one science-proven way to improve on that.
In a 2009 study, Canadian researchers found that taking holidays helped to buffer job stress among a sample of 900 lawyers.
We may not all be lawyers, but we've certainly all experienced immense stress over the past year.
So, since you probably don't want to take a trip right now, maybe planning it and daydreaming about better days when it will be safe to go holidaying will ease the stress a bit.
Here are some reasons to start planning:
The adage of putting your own oxygen mask on before helping others applies here too. You can't build a strong relationship unless you are strong inside yourself.
A holiday is undoubtedly a form of self-care, especially if you go somewhere which offers the things which help you recharge – indulge in quiet time, outdoor activities, beauty treatments, wholesome food or something else entirely. Whether you practice self-care together or separately, your relationship can only be better for it.
The saying "laughter is the best medicine" was so apt in 2020 because where would we have been without humour? Whether it's watching silly sitcoms on Netflix during lockdown, laughing at ridiculous situations or witty memes on social media– humour can be a lifeline in stressful times like these.
Time away on vacation can give you space to relax and unwind and make time for spontaneity, happiness and laughter – things we all need after this pandemic. If you choose an all-inclusive holiday package, all your needs are taken care of from the moment you arrive, leaving more time to enjoy the moment and make new memories!
Remember when we could only exercise or be outdoors in that one small-time period each day? Parks, forests and streets were packed with people merely breathing in the fresh air and communing with nature as we found a renewed appreciation in the power of nature to lift our spirits.
So, pick a holiday destination where nature is abundant and the outdoors are celebrated, for instance the Maldives, with its open spaces, white-sand beaches, swaying palm trees and abundant sea life. There are so many land and water sports and outdoor activities to enjoy in the Maldives – most of which are all-inclusive if you book a resort-like Club Med.
We may have spent most of the past year inside the same four walls, but that doesn't mean that we've always communicated effectively. You may have spent much of your leisure time on your laptops, watching Netflix in separate rooms!
This trip can be a time to stay away from screens and spend time together with no work or household chores to distract you. You can talk about the pandemic, how this made you both feel, and how you can work together to tackle issues and be stronger together in the future.
Time away from the mundane gives you space to do this reflection exercise together, so you can make a plan to work towards the life you envisage in the new normal.
Dust off that suitcase, get planning and get packing. You deserve it and your relationship will be all the better because of it.
Do you have a story to share with us? Tell us about it here.
Sign up to W24's newsletters, so you don't miss out on any of our stories and giveaways.