Tips for enjoying your vacation, courtesy of the Happiness Project

If you haven’t heard of the Happiness Project already, you’re really missing out. The blog’s author, Gretchen Rubin, tries out “every principle, tip, theory, and scientific study [she can] find, whether from Aristotle or St. Therese or Martin Seligman or Oprah.” The blog then “report[s] on what works and what doesn’t.”

Every Wednesday at the Happiness Project is Tip Day, and this week Gretchen offered her six tips for getting the most out of your vacation. Some of my favorites:

Return a day early. When I was growing up, we always returned from trips at the last minute, to eke out as much time as possible at whatever place we were visiting. But …[o]n this trip, we came back on Saturday, so we had a day to sleep late, do errands, catch up on mail and email, re-stock the fridge, etc. The re-entry day made the trip shorter, but it made the overall vacation experience more enjoyable. It’s no fun to go away for a relaxing week, but then find yourself stressed out again a few hours after you’re back at home.”

“Pack almonds. Several months ago, on a family trip with my in-laws, I realized that my periodic bouts of crabbiness were related to hunger. I seem to get hungry much more often than most adults, and I’m also a very picky eater. For this trip, I packed a bag of almonds, and it made a huge difference in being able to maintain my mood. Almonds made a great travel snack, because they’re light, don’t crumble, don’t stain, don’t need preparation, and are filling and nutritious.”

Find the rest here.

And here are some past tips from Gretchen: tips for feeling happier in the next hour, tips for sleeping better, and tips for buying less.