A vacation is something that is unique to the individual going on it. If we are using a vacation to spend time away from life or as a way to learn more, a vacation is undoubtedly the best way for us to get back feeling like we achieved something, even if that something is lazing on a beach. But what does it really take to make sure that, when you are on vacation, you get the most out of it and achieve your vacation goals? Here are a number of ways to ensure that you will make the most of it, whatever happens.
Savor the High Life
If you feel like you cannot make the most of life on a daily basis, you may be savoring the anticipation a vacation brings. If you are looking at which luxury restaurants in Miami to go to, because you wanted to try something like oysters or expand your comfort zone when it comes to seafood, this is the ideal opportunity for you to make the most of the high life. But in order to do this, you’ve got to save more money.
It can feel difficult to match the expectation of anticipation when going on vacation just in case it doesn’t match what you had in your mind. This is why it’s important to bear in mind the next method.
Make the Most of the Anticipation
A lot of people feel an instant boost in a mood purely because they are planning their vacation, with happiness levels dropping back to normal after the trip is all done, and this means that if you want to get more out of your vacation, you should plan trips as far in advance as possible so you have the opportunity to look forward to it. We can all feel bound by the structures of modern life, and a vacation is the thing that we are looking forward to.
Whether you are looking forward to a few days off at Christmas or some time to yourself with a long weekend away, the reality is that it’s not just about the occasion itself, but about the anticipation. So make the most of it.
Don’t Over-Schedule the Calendar
Many people who are full to the brim with excitement over going on vacation can feel excited by the many possibilities. You may think that if you’re heading to Florida, you’ve got the opportunity to go to the nearest theme parks and beaches and savor some of the wildlife, but if you over-schedule your vacation, you may find yourself rushing about and you can feel stressed as a result. It’s important that when you are planning a vacation, you don’t think about scheduling three different expeditions per day, but allow yourself one thing to do per day and make the most of that free time.
A vacation is about unwinding, and many people think that when they go 100 miles an hour in normal life, they need to do the same on vacation. It takes a while for us to decompress when we are on vacation because we have to travel there and get into the groove of a slower pace of life. If you over-schedule, you’re going to feel rushed and you’re going to head back to life feeling like you didn’t make the most of everything because there was too much to do, and therefore you didn’t give yourself the license to enjoy it.
Ask Yourself Why You Want to Go
It sounds very simple, but if you wonder why you want to go to a specific location or why you want to do something, you can shape your experiences into something that will match your desire and create a more purposeful experience. Choosing a continent like Europe sounds amazing in theory, but you have to remember there are dozens of countries, all with their own unique cultures. If you want to go to Europe, why do you want to do this? Because if you are after a more European slower way of life, would you be better off venturing to just one of the countries that typically have a slower pace?
You can spend time on a veranda in Milan, eating olives, and looking at canals, and truly relax without needing to go and make a whistle-stop tour around every adjacent country. Because if you are looking for a vacation that helps you to unwind, when you start to break down the reasons why you want to go to a certain place and what you want to experience, you may find that you don’t need to go around the houses. There can be one simple place that provides very worthwhile experiences without you having to spend more money and stress traveling to other locations.
Don’t Get Hung Up on Pictures
You may want to preserve memories of your trip, which means that you get the camera out every few minutes, but you’ve got to remember that taking photos can actually impair the memory of your trip. Rather than just taking images, think about being invested in something before you take those pictures.
There will be times when you need to take a quick picture because it’s a “blink and you’ll miss it” moment, but if you think you need to act fast and take pictures all the time, you might be missing out on experiencing something that will penetrate to the core of your soul.
If you take your phone out to take pictures, you may find the email icon in the corner, and after all, it’s only a few seconds to check an email, but those few seconds can easily distract your attention from the things that should matter. Having a vacation, whether you are going by yourself or with family members, is about connecting in a way that you wouldn’t normally do in everyday life.
You are there to make real human connections, and this is even more important if you’ve got children that you seldom see because you’re busy with work, domestic duties, and everything in between. You need to recognize that traveling is about the experience that you absorb through your eyes, not through your device. It is a good idea to make sure that you know how to disconnect from your phone so you can build proper relationships on your journey.
Take a Couple of Days off Work Before and After Your Vacation
Some people feel like they need to tie up all loose ends just before they venture off, and this could mean that they work overtime to make sure that they can properly decompress on vacation, but when you work more before you head away, you are running the risk of not feeling energized, and if you take on more work before you venture off in the hopes that you can get more money to spend on vacation, you could find yourself checking your work emails while on vacation.
Instead, think about pacing your workload before you go away, and potentially put in some overtime a couple of weeks before you leave, so the week in the run-up to leaving means a much less stressful one, and if you have the luxury booking a couple of days off before you go on vacation, don’t use this to pack. Make sure the weekend before you leave is about packing, and then those couple of days before you go on the vacation itself means you can do a couple of double checks, but also get yourself into the vacation frame of mind. The same applies when you return, and because you need a couple of days off to re-calibrate from jet lag, it allows you to ease back into the normal way of life, and potentially minimize those post-vacation blues.
Practice Being Present Before You Leave
While mindfulness is something that may not tally with your idea of a perfect vacation, for those people who are constantly checking emails or in a rush, having a couple of days off before you leave allows you to practice being present. Rather than thinking about the past or worrying about what’s going to happen after you come back, consider what being in the moment will do for you. It allows all of us to direct our attention to what is in front of us, and this means that we will enjoy our vacations far more.
Because whether you are going on a road trip or a relaxing vacation by the pool, it’s important for you to be present because it allows you to relax into the moment. Going somewhere is about trying new things, and being present allows us to take in all of the senses associated with foods, imagery, or a new culture. Because when you are present, you’re going to remember a lot more, and this means that when you experience some dose of those post-holiday blues, thinking back to your vacation means that you can instantly relive those wonderful moments and you will remember so much, and, ultimately, you will enjoy your vacation because you were completely invested.