Summer may be over, but are you finding yourself longing for that “ one week” that you took off work, packed a suitcase, hopped in the car or on a plane, ran ragged the entire time, then came home to 1000 emails?
One week shouldn’t be what one considers a vacation. Treat your life like a vacation! Yes many of us are still working, and some of you still have kids at home. Stop overextending yourself! One of my favorite sayings is “ cancelled plans are my favorite plans”. What that means, are plans that I wish I had never committed to. I remember when I couldn’t say no, and found myself at the end of the day having to change my clothes and head to some function I had committed to. The entire way asking myself why! I used to suffer severely from FOMO. FOMO means the “Fear of Missing Out”, it is an emotional response to the belief that other people are living better, more satisfying lives or that important opportunities are being missed. FOMO often leads to feelings of unease, dissatisfaction, depression and stress. Not everything in life deserves your energy. It is important for each of us to become more aware of what is truly worth the hours of our very important life. Those who have created a life they love have not that so by saying “yes” to every invitation that comes their way. Don’t get me wrong, it’s flattering to be invited to events and soirée’s by friends and colleagues. But successful people who are truly happy in their soul, have learned how to say no with confidence. They have done so by guarding their time ruthlessly for the things that matter most and by learning to say “no” graciously to the others. And the key word is graciously. Don’t lie. Simply say, “ I’m sorry, I wont be able to make it, but thank you so much for the invitation”. Thats all. I have slowly weaned myself off the fear of missing out over the years. COVID helped a lot with that. My phrase of 2023 is “ No Mo FOMO”. I find it interesting on social media, people who are my age ( middle aged), are still out on the town on the regular, at the fanciest of restaurants, dressed in their labels, ensuring that YOU know how much fun they are having. Y’all have fun with that!
If your kids are still at home, you don’t always have to do things with other families. Trade kids for a night. Send yours over there this weekend, and take theirs the next weekend. Then create a fabulous meal, set the table, light the candles, stay in your comfies and relax with a spouse, a partner, a friend or just yourself.
Make relationships a priority. There is a saying that is quite true, “there is only one happiness in this life, to love and be loved.” Loving relationships bring a joy into our lives that can never be matched by income, title, or career achievements. People matter and are worth the effort.
Do not confuse “plans” with travel and experiences! Travel inspires us to see, taste and try new things. It constantly challenges us, not only to adapt to and explore new surroundings, but also to engage with different people, to embrace adventures as they come and to share new and meaningful experiences with friends and loved ones. I find that planning one or two trips a year gives me so much to look forward too, the planning keeps me focused on the prize. But when you aren’t planning a vacation, I urge you to try and take everyday life and treat it like a vacation when you can.
If you want to learn how to enjoy life and create something you do not need to escape from, you can do so. It may require you to change your mindset, your pursuits, or where you focus your energy, but it is always worth it. I did, and it has been more than worth it. My mind feels free and liberated.
“Instead of wondering when your next vacation is, try setting up a life that you don’t need to escape from” Seth Godin