Many of us are constantly managing the influx of information that we receive throughout our day, making time for reflection and mindfulness almost impossible. From co-workers, superiors, organizational partners, and committee members to our spouses, children, schools, extended family, volunteer organizations, and churches, an array of communication comes to us at all hours, including weekends, holidays, and even when you thought you had told everyone that you would not be available. So, how do we manage it all? And, is it beneficial to mentally “getaway?”

Although we consider ourselves experts in providing an ideal location for your mental (and physical) “getaway,” we may not have all of the answers to the questions listed above. However, we have visited with 1000’s of individuals who have told us how important it was for them, their families, and their productivity in life to allow their brains adequate downtime. To answer the first question regarding how to manage the influx of information, we recommend starting with setting expectations. If you immediately answer everyone right away, people will expect it. And they may come to you first because you always answer right away. We are not suggesting that you “ghost” your family, friends, or co-workers, but be reasonable. Studies show that we are more productive when we set aside time to do one task versus negotiating multiple tasks while texting and answering emails all day. Next, prioritize. We suggest that you respond first to those who need you most. If you are spending all your time texting and answering emails, then what are you getting done?

For the second question regarding whether it is beneficial to take a “mental vacation,” the answer is YES!! By allowing your brain the necessary downtime, you increase productivity, potentially improve your relationships with family and friends, laser focus your attention, recharge your brain’s capabilities, and encourage your most creative self. The biggest challenge is recognizing the importance of mental and emotional wellness and treating it the same as any physical issue. Think about when you are reading something and find yourself re-reading it multiple times and still without any clue as to what you just read. Your brain is telling you that you need to take a break. We suggest checking in with yourself regularly to reflect on what is going on in your life. And, when you discover that it is time to give your brain some downtime, we have some great ideas for you!

First, think of a place that you can visit that is completely out of your normal day-to-day routine. Maybe the mountains? Or the ocean? We recommend coming to Blowing Rock, as it offers stunning views, amazing restaurants, endless things to do, and private spaces to enjoy some downtime. Whether your mental escape includes meditation, sleep, yoga, a walk in the woods, a quiet place to reflect, or visiting a museum, it is all here. There are endless trails, beautiful lakes and wildlife, places to explore, and places to relax. Imagine waking up and stepping outside to the sounds of nature, zero responsibility, access to nature walks, and even some areas that have limited cell phone coverage (don’t worry, they are few and far between, but they offer an excuse to turn off your phone!). While we recommend at least 3 days to fully disconnect, there are options to stay for a night, a week, or for a month if that’s what you need.

We truly want you to do whatever is best for you and the downtime your brain needs to replenish. We will be here to guide the planning of your escape and are happy to be your excuse for the much-needed getaway for you and your significant other. We invite you to come and unwind, relax, reflect, and find your new perfect place for mental downtime. You and your significant other will leave with replenished attention, the ability to increase mental and emotional productivity, newfound creativity, and incredible memories. See y’all soon!