Eat, Pray, Holiday?

We’re all told what to eat and what not to eat, the best ways to loose weight and how much exercise we should be doing, but in the chaos that is student life, a lot of that just doesn’t happen. Instead, we eat what’s quickest to prepare, sleep as little as we need maintain basic human function, and become caffeine-dependent organisms.

Enter a tropical holiday.

So I know not everyone can afford to sun themselves for two weeks in the semester break, but the benefits far outweigh the costs. Besides, you don’t have to spend a tonne of money to unwind. Here’s the top five benefits of escaping, just for a little while.

1. Sun

The Tasmanian Public Health Department estimates one third of all Tasmanians are vitamin D deficient, due to our lack of exposure to the sun. There’s not much we can really do about that, apart from taking horse capsule-sized vitamin D supplements. But given the choice between forcing some capsules down my throat or going on a holiday, I know what I’d choose.

2. Food

I’m writing this from Bali, and the food here is absolutely phenomenal. Truly fantastic. It’s cheap, it’s fresh, it’s healthy, and I don’t have to cook it myself. I do love cooking, but when you’re neck-deep in five-week old readings, cooking seems like an inefficient use of my time. You can also up your fruit intake, as tropical fruit is literally 1000000 times better than most fruit we can access in Tassie.

3. Relaxation

Perhaps obvious, but when was the last time you can say you were truly relaxed? Sure, you may have binge-watched Orange Is The New Black, but I’m willing to bet you were procrastinating something. That hangs over your head a bit. There’s something very freeing about leaving the country, or even the state. Those responsibilities are quite literally out of sight, out of mind. That’s inherently good for anyone’s mental state.

4. New People

When you’re at home, you become comfortable, and things can become same-y. You might have the best group of friends ever, but until you leave them for a bit, you’re unlikely to meet anyone new. Travelling is a great way of meeting new people, hearing new stories and learning more about the world. Sometimes, you might even make lifelong friends, and no one would want to miss out on that chance.

5. Life Experience

There’s an entire planet out there. There are myriads of things to see, do, experience, try, think and feel. You don’t have to be away long, or even go very far, to gain new perspectives and new ways of thinking. Life experiences shape who you are and what you want to achieve, so why not travel?

I’m not trying to convince you that if you take some time out overseas in your semester break that you’ll ‘find yourself’, but you’ll certain learn a lot, whether that’s about yourself or not. So pack your bags and get planning because it’s good for you health. That’s my excuse.

This piece was published in the University of Tasmania’s student magazine, Togatus. You can find it in the Togatus 2016 Yearbook. 

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