I am writing this post during the midst of a very long road trip with my youngest daughter. Summer is the perfect time to travel across the country and visit as many places as your time allows. Over the years, I’ve been on numerous road trips with my children for various purposes. Some have been strictly vacations, others have been to go on book signing tours, and still others (like this one) have been to visit college campuses. I’ve also been able to combine work and vacation at times to give us the best of both worlds. How I’ve loved these many trips.

Still, although road trips are loads of fun, they can be kind of intense in terms of travel and planning, but the benefits outweigh the costs. I hope that my daughters will look back upon these road trips with lots of good memories one day.

Not only are road trips very entertaining, but they also have a lot of other benefits for us in terms of our emotional, mental and physical well-being. Here are a few of them:

  • Improved outlook. When we take time away, we begin to focus more on the big picture, and start to embrace a healthier outlook on life. We worry less about the small stuff and embrace the more important things.
  • Better bonding. A road trip involves spending a lot of time together, in the car, in the hotel, and wherever our path takes us. That time together really provides a lot of opportunities to talk more and let loose.
  • Adventure and exploration. When you are on the road, you are that much more likely to try something new or do something you wouldn’t normally do. It is your time to lean into your adventurous side.
  • Time to disconnect. A long road trip may allow you to disconnect from technology and your everyday demands even further. Sometimes you may even be without Wi-Fi and that’s okay, even good.
  • Provides a sense of excitement. There’s something so appealing about going somewhere you have never been before; there’s great anticipation about what’s around each new corner.
  • Shared experience. When you travel with others, you are living a shared experience together, and that is so priceless, particularly in terms of bonding with your children, or other family members.
  • Sentimental value. I hope that when my daughters are older, they will remember all of the different places we went to and the things that we did with smiles on their faces.
  • Improved mindset. When we change our scenery, we often reduce our overwhelm and other negative emotions.
  • Increased happiness. This happiness can start as early as when we begin planning our trip and keep us feeling excited and motivated for weeks afterwards.
  • Decreased stress. When we change our environment, and take some time away from work, we find time to relax and think about things other than our work and the many demands upon us. We also stop focusing on the people and tasks that bring us stress on a regular basis.
  • Better overall well-being. Taking these types of trips can improve our sleep and mood and reduce the number and intensity of our complaints. What’s more, these effects last for a period of time after our vacation.
  • Improved physical health. Taking a road trip or vacation regularly can lower the risk of heart disease or heart attacks according to certain studies.

As you can see, there are many benefits of taking a road trip, particularly over the summer when things tend to slow down. Why not go ahead and start planning yours now.