If you’ve read many books set in Regency England then you’ve likely heard of people sea bathing and taking the waters. While there was some indication that drinking the mineral rich waters from Bath or dipping in the sea at Brighton improved health, it was often the removal from everyday life that did as much good as anything.

Sea Bathing painting
"Mermaids At Brighton" by William Heath

Leaving your problems in London or at your country estate while you jaunted off to stroll down the street in front of the Royal Crescent and sip from the therapeutic spring water could improve a mood faster than anything else.

The Benefits of Changing Scenery

Selecting travel destinations

It’s the same reason so many people love vacations. It’s why you have to book your Spring Break hotel room six months in advance if you’re hitting one of the more popular beaches. It’s why travel sites thrive and credit cards offer hotel and airline points.

People have long acknowledged the benefits of changing scenery. Entire businesses have been built on people needing a new perspective on things.

Several years ago, I had a major decision to make. I struggled over it for months. Finally, it was coming down to the wire. I had to make the decision. One night, my husband took care of our daughter and I checked in to the hotel down the street. I was less than five miles from home, but it might have been five states because in that hotel room was nothing from my regular life.

My daughter didn’t cry and wake me up.

The dishes in the sink didn’t mock me for not cleaning them right after dinner.

No harsh buzz emitted from the laundry room informing me that the next load was ready to be folded.

The change of scenery let me spend focused time in prayer and thought so that I could make a decision.

The Difficulties of Getting Away

My husband is a minister and I am a stay at home mom and unpublished writer. Translation: Our work hours are ridiculous and we don’t make a lot of money. That means vacations are really difficult to fit in and afford.

While you may want to take and 30-day cruise across the Atlantic to explore Italy or even just spend a week at the beach, it isn’t always feasible. I dream of one day taking a research vacation to England. Right now, it’s not even in the budget book, but I still dream about it.

That doesn’t mean you can’t get away.

Family Playing in the Park

When we feel overtired and overstressed, we take a trip to my in-laws. It’s one place where we are expected to do virtually nothing. My fabulous mother-in-law takes care of the kids when they wake up so we get to sleep in. We get to take an afternoon to ourselves every trip and go stroll around their small-town main street.

It costs us nothing but gas to get there, and we usually leave feeling rested and refreshed.

We’ve also done staycations, where we change our perspective just by changing our expectations of the day. It doesn’t work quite as well as getting fully away, but it does help. We’ve done local overnights by booking hotels three or four days in advance. You have to be flexible about where you go, but you can get really good deals.

Every year we take a weekend trip with my family as well. Traveling in a group often defrays the cost of the trip. Plus it has the added benefit of allowing you to deepen important relationships on the trip.

The Real Benefit Isn’t In Getting Away

To really reap the benefits, you have to change your perspective. Vacations and changes in scenery are temporary. It’s why we keep taking trips and looking for the next break.

Eyeglasses on the BibleBut it’s possible to bring that serenity and bliss home by allowing God to transform your mind and thinking.

Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is – his good, pleasing, and perfect will. ~ Romans 12:2

When we allow God to form our thoughts, opinions, and desires to His will, we can find peace and tranquility among the chaos of everyday life. Imagine having vacations as a treat, something to enjoy instead of needing them just to maintain your equilibrium.

God can change your vision, making that same old couch, cubicle, or mini-van look like completely new scenery.


Photos by FreeDigitalPhotos.net unless otherwise noted.

Originally posted 2012-07-06 10:00:00.

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