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The mental relief from traveling is worth the trouble of leaving

Although traveling can cause stress, the benefits from it make the hassle worth it

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The mental relief from traveling is worth the trouble of leaving

Katya Gillig, Mill Valley News editor-in-chief

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The first thing most people told me after I said I was going to miss two weeks of school to go to Australia was “you must be so stressed out,” and I have to admit I was. The thought of missing two weeks worth of lessons and homework seemed daunting. I’ve been to 11 countries, so I have done my fair share of traveling, but I had never missed this much school before. But then I put my stress in perspective. I was going to miss two weeks to go on the trip of a lifetime.

Not only did I realize how lucky I was but I quickly learned that there are many other benefits to traveling abroad, such as better health. A study by the Global Commision on Aging and Transamerica Center for Retirement Studies showed that those who travel twice a year have a significantly lower risk of having a heart attack.

Traveling also lowers stress. It didn’t take long for all of my worries about missing school to melt away. As I walked along the beach in Melbourne and through the mountains in New Zealand, I forgot all about the stress I dealt with at home. One study showed that it only takes three days of vacation to feel less anxious, more rested and in a better mood. And this stress relief lasts. Despite having a lot of work to get done when I got back, I was more relaxed after my vacation and was able to more easily deal with my workload.

Despite missing all of this school, I gained so many new experiences. I learned just as much during my two weeks abroad as I do in normal school weeks.

Even though I was super stressed about missing school for two weeks, it was entirely worth it. In the future, I will always jump at the chance to travel, despite the stress it can cause.

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