Recently I went on a fantastic girls getaway with my book club. We headed to Palm Springs for a mini vacation (without kids or husbands). Plane tickets were a steal and our combined cash awarded us a nice Airbnb.
After our time together I came home with a better sense of self and joy. I was reinvigorated with fresh ideas and perspectives on my life. A girls getaway is like a natural drug, and I’m here to tell you why I think going on one is important!
5 Reasons to Go on a Girls Getaway
1. Improve your mental health
According to the Mayo Clinic, good friendships quite literally improve our mental health. Adults who have good friendships see a significant decrease in depression and high blood pressure. We are affected by our relationships, so if they are healthy we are positively impacted.
Going on a trip with girlfriends is like guzzling a big dose of dopamine. We have a chance to connect without interruption. You are able to experience a change of scenery and new places heightening the joy of an already-established relationship.
While in Palm Springs, my anxiety levels were incredibly low. Spending time laughing, talking late into the night, and experiencing the sunshine did wonders for my mind, body, and soul.
Visiting a new place is invigorating! While I went on this trip with my friends, I felt a sense of independence I don’t get while I’m home. With a family and pets and to-do’s always in my periphery, it’s hard to feel independent. I think every mother needs this a few times a year.
While in Palm Springs, I was able to visit places I’ve always wanted to see, like Salvation Mountain, Slab City, and Bombay Beach. While I was with friends, I also felt totally free of responsibility. I enjoyed these experiences to their fullest. Feeling like a giddy child, I howled and cackled at the sky! I took these experiences home with me feeling changed by them. But also ready to one day revisit the slabs with my family so maybe they could experience what I did.
Going on a trip, no matter the length of time, is enough to shine a light on my personal values. When I travel I am open to the people whose homes, cities, or states I am visiting. I notice what brings me peace and what makes me feel unnerved. I get inspired by new landscapes, weather, and lifestyle.
A new perspective aids my personal growth. Experiencing a new place is often imprinted on my spirit. I can’t forget the lessons I learned because the experience was powerful.
For instance, while I enjoy looking at fancy clothes or experiencing expensive dining, these are not things I need to thrive. I would much rather invest time in locally owned dives, art districts, and historical spaces that hold some grit. I value what comes from a person’s mind, in all its mess or weirdness, over a perfect shiny place with externally perfect people. While they do have their place, I am drained by consumerism.
4. Set a good example for your kids
Leaving for a trip is hard. Once there, it’s easy! At least for me. Since I unschool my kids, I am with them constantly. Anxiety reigns as my trip date gets closer. What if something happens to my family while I’m away? What if something happens to me? Logically I understand that whether I’m home or far from home anything is possible at anytime. So I go on the trip.
Not only do I leave for myself, but I also leave for them. This gives my kids time without me. They find themselves in a new situation. They experience their own independence, but also depend on their dad or other trusted caregivers while I am away.
I want my kids to know I have strong friendships and that I’m not afraid to travel so that one day maybe they will be comfortable doing the same. We lead by example and this is one example I am glad to set.
No matter how beautiful a vacation is, at some point, I am ready to go home. Even back to cold, wintery Iowa. There’s something magical about your own bed and cuddles with your kids or mate. The routine of life can sometimes be nice to fall back into. I mean, especially after having so many carefree hours for days on end.
Coming off of a trip can be a little sad, but it also gives me much to be grateful for. Like, my dog! He was so thrilled I was home. Or coffee from my own coffee pot. My husband makes it just right. Seeing my kids’ eyes gleam when I return, holding their little hands, and answering all of their questions. The familiarity of streets and neighborhoods, knowing my way around. And of course friendships! We all get to see each other again, next week, and remember what we just did. It’s lovely to be home while dreaming about our “next time” because we will definitely need a “next time”!