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5 Tips to Beat Vacation Stress

Cub at zoo

My summer vacation this year was spending time with my son’s family and his two-year-old daughter. We created unscheduled time to relax and appreciate each other and did activities geared for family fun. We went to the zoo, and prepped with water, food and other necessities for an outing with a toddler before we left. We agreed ahead of time that we don’t have to see every animal in the zoo and set up pre-scheduled break times to relax on the grass under the shade trees. We promised to communicate and speak up if anyone needed anything. We also used a fun technique called prepping the field environment.

Each person’s thoughts, attitudes and emotions emit energetic fields that affect the social field environment as we interact with each other. Research shows that we can help to precondition the field environment by sending love and positive energy to gatherings before we go. At HeartMath, we call this “prepping the field environment.”

We stayed at the zoo for about three hours. I most enjoyed perceiving the experience through a two-year-old’s eyes and delighting in the spurts of elated joy she radiated from the wonderment of her day. I felt that prepping the field environment helped to enrich that experience for me.

Join the Facebook page HeartMath My Kids! A game from Teaching Children to Love e-book is posted every other Friday.

Teaching Children to Love: 80 Games and Fun Activities for Raising Balanced Children in Unbalanced Times by Doc Childre is an excellent resource for parents. This e-book is chock-full of activities that support heart-based values like gratitude and appreciation.

What are your summer vacation plans? I would love to hear about them.

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Read more: Children, Family, Fun, General Health, Health, Home, Inspiration, Life, Mental Wellness, Nourishing the Heart, Outdoor Activities, Spirit, Stress, Teens, Travel, , , ,

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Sara, from the HeartMath Institute

Sara Childre is President and CEO of the non-profit Institute of HeartMath. Since 1991, Sara has helped oversee and develop HeartMath trainings, educational products and scientific programs. She was appointed vice president and CFO of the institute in 1992, then president and CEO in 1998.


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3:03AM PST on Feb 8, 2013

a lot of it comes to planning. when we went to edinburgh, we both wrote down individually what we wanted to do; and when. then we compared our plans, modified them accordingly with what fit better where and compromised either with when we were going to visit something-day or evening, or on a specific day. it worked out really well and we got to see more things than we anticipated as we had better planned our day and what we were doing. we had the pass, so when we went on the bus to the zoo, we decided to do the places we needed a bus to get to, to save money on unnecessary bus trips and used that day solely for that purpose. if it didn't fit, we didn't do that particular site visit. planning and communication is key!

12:45PM PDT on Aug 17, 2012


6:21AM PDT on Jun 15, 2012

An important aspect of vacation is just changing your normal patterns of thinking. If you do that, then you can be relaxed and happy without needing to leave home or spend loads of money. You might still choose to go away, but you won't have to.

Most of us are living in the future and filling every moment with "shoulds": to do lists, anxiety of what people think, whether or not we'll succeed, planning, etc. Take one day a week to stop all that and live in the moment.

Shut off the electronics and focus on the aspects of our lives that make us happy. Go for a walk and enjoy the flowers. Sit in the garden in the sunshine. Go to the park (or free museum or...) and spend time truly enjoying the friends you are with. A day of re-connecting with gratitude and appreciation and you'll be as revived as if you spent a week on vacation.

11:17PM PDT on Jun 12, 2012

No stress at all, but these are good tips, thanks!

11:25AM PDT on Jun 12, 2012

Good advice - thanks

6:45AM PDT on Jun 12, 2012


6:45AM PDT on Jun 12, 2012


5:41AM PDT on Jun 12, 2012

Thanks for the guidelines!

4:43AM PDT on Jun 12, 2012


12:42AM PDT on Jun 12, 2012

noted, thanks

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Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of
Care2, Inc., its employees or advertisers.

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