How to take a holiday…….when you can’t take a holiday?
Updated: Oct 12, 2020
You think I’m joking here, but a holiday can almost be a state of mind. How often do we take a holiday only to find we come back needing another holiday?
School and Uni holidays are nearly upon us and for many we are still committed to work or other activities that keep us from disappearing to a holiday spot. The idea of a holiday by definition is “rest and recreation” and a “departure or cessation of normal activities”.
Where is our mind when we take a holiday? Usually we’re busy looking at tourist sites, participating in hiking, skiing or other activities or just lying on the beach, sleeping and eating etc. Whatever the activity is, if we are not fully present and living in the moment then we are not extracting the most rested time from our experience.
The most important thing to remember is that it is your presence in the exact moment, wherever you are, that will give you the most of any given time. It is your “snap shot” moments that make all the difference.
To give you an example, I had one of those snap shot moments when I was at the Hunter Valley and was busy serving lunch and making our guests feel comfortable. For a brief moment I sat and observed my boys as well as our guest’s sons all throwing a football in the open green paddock. This can sound like a normal activity but for me I sat and observed them all playing (different age groups) and had a snap shot moment where the sight of this rather simple activity made me flush with happiness and warmth. The sun was basking down on us and the weather crisp but superb. For me in that moment I took in such an amazing relaxed experience. I was truly in the moment and there was nothing else going on in my mind. There were many nice moments throughout the weekend but for me this was “the snapshot” best part.
It was my ability to STOP, SIT and take in that exact MOMENT. I allowed myself to unplug and just be fully drawn in. Later on when we were driving home, and even now as I recall this story for you, I felt warm and relaxed as I pictured this moment in my mind’s eye.
So it’s the perception of our own moments that bring a certain feeling and experience. For this exact reason we know that its a feeling we get and that same feeling can be recreated at any given time.
If you feel like you need a holiday, and can’t get away, here is what you can do;
Look at past photo’s of your favourite spot. Slow down and feel the feeling of being there. Feel what the weather was like. Was it warm, cool was the landscape soothing? Bring back any positive, relaxing feelings. If you don’t have a particular photo then google one. Maybe you feel like escaping into green lush bushland or perhaps the beach is your relaxing spot. Whatever it is just stop for a few moments and feel like you are there. Use all your senses and go through them one by one and recall or imagine how you feel.
SIGHT, SMELL, TOUCH, LISTEN, TASTE
Bring all these feeling into your mind’s eye.
Slow down for the day. Whatever you have to do, still do but as you do it really slow down and be mindful with each activity. Even those mundane activities, slow them right down and fully be present with whatever it is. If you are on public transport, sit and observe everyone on the bus or look out the window and note what you pass. Discover something new.
If you are eating your lunch, perhaps this time take your lunch to a park or just look out a window or sit somewhere else today. Your intentions to do something different will work like magic.
Your speech…..Today talk a little slower. Don’t rush through conversations. Be fully present. If you order lunch or a coffee smile more and have a conversation with the attendant that is helping you.
Making dinner for the family or shopping. Slow it right down…! walk slowly, choose products slowly, maybe even listen to music as you shop today. If you are preparing food, slow that down too. Everyone will get fed at some stage. Today is your holiday slow down day.
Maybe just today you can have a long bath or try meditation, paint your nails, read the newspaper/magazine/book.
Think of things you can do on your mini holiday.
Smile and know this is a “go slow” day.
Just try this once and see the huge change in your mind and energy, then treat yourself regularly in the same way, whenever you need. Alexandra Andrews Life & Business Coach
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