You know that almost-primal urge you have to just get in your car and skip town? It's a surge of instinctual yearning driving you towards the great outdoors, adventure and the exciting unpredictability of raw nature.
Here are seven reasons why you should just do it._But first, here's a little nostalgia to set the mood:
1. It fits any budget
Make that giant leap of faith into the driver's seat. You know how you stand financially, which means you have a pretty good idea of how far you'll be able to go. If you've got only $40, see where that can get you! You don't have to fly to Asia to see the world.
2. It decreases risk of depression
Nothing like justifying a quick vacation than good old fashioned research. A press release by the Global Coalition on Aging reports there is indeed a link between travel and several health benefits, including a decreased risk of depression.
3. It increases brain health
The same article quotes Paul Nussbaum, Ph.D., who states, "Because [travel] challenges the brain with new and different experiences and environments, it is an important behavior that promotes brain health and builds brain resilience across the lifespan."
4. It requires minimal preparation
That's the glory of spontaneous road trips - they're spontaneous. Yes, you should make sure you're always well prepared wherever you go. But just getting in your car and driving will force you to only take the essentials (as opposed to taking three days to pack anything and everything that'll fit in a suitcase).
Just get in your car and go. It's easy.
5. It brings the benefits of spontaneity
Spontaneous vacations are all about new experiences: going places you've never been, doing things you've never done. Spontaneity also gets your adrenaline pumping - even if your end goal is just to find somewhere blissful to relax.
It's hard to experience the benefits of spontaneity when every aspect of your trip is planned. Being spontaneous pushes you out of your comfort zone. It challenges you to think on your feet and roll with the punches.
Remember: The only way to experience the benefits of spontaneity is to be spontaneous.
6. It gives you perspective
Being an adult brings with it a hefty load of problems. Taking time to leave it on a shelf for later might be just what you need. Hitting the road isn't an excuse to neglect responsibility but rather a therapeutic way to gain perspective on those problems, which enables you to better handle them when you get back.
7. It is the best thing you can do
Honestly, what else do you have going on this weekend? If your only answer is, "Sleep in and watch Netflix with the kids," you're in a great position to hit the road.