Category: Vacation

Summer Lessons

need-bryon-katie

 

Waning Summer

My sister and I were talking on the phone the other day lamenting the end of summer.  It seemed to come as such a miracle to us here in New England this year, it is hard to see it pass.

A reader of my Monday Inspirations reminded me throughout the summer that “Vacation is a state of mind.” (Thanks Wayne!) It has been a mantra all summer long.

Now in the twilight of the season, I realize the quote above is also a subtle mantra I have been adopting this summer.

Getting Caught Up In Stuff

Summer allows us to shed what we don’t need.  We live out of beach bags.  We open the windows and simplify our homes.  The garden grows of its own accord.

As I put my fall calendar together, I find myself slipping away from the vacation mindset being replaced by “I’ll get through it.”  I am getting caught up in stuff again and it doesn’t feel as good as summer did.   A familiar stress seeps back into my life.  I feel my shoulders tighten as I add another to do to the ever expanding list.  I sit back and sigh.

I take a deep breath and then another.  I repeat “All I have is all I need and all I need I have in this moment.”  I grab a water and stroll through the garden marveling at all that has been provided for me.  Gratitude replaces the stress.

Summer is Gratitude for What Is

I’ve learned the vacation mindset isn’t just about getting away.  It is about letting go of the stressful stuff and giving thanks for all that is in your life.  It is looking beyond your four walls and seeing there is a beautiful world out there full of wonder, surprises and yes, everything you need.

If you feel your summer being cut short, take a moment and get back into the vacation mindset.  You have everything you need to be happy.  Take a moment and look around.

Summer Vacation – Week One

month-vacation-quote-william-james

 

A New View of Vacation

Without the standard family vacation, I found myself floundering at the beginning of the summer.  At first I was depressed facing a vacationless summer.

What if the whole summer was my vacation? The thought inspired me.  I would have designated work days and times, but the rest of the time were for relaxing, exploring and living a vacation life.

The French Do It

At first my ego went crazy.  Who are you to think you can work like that?  It will never work.  On and on it screamed causing me to waiver.

Did you know in France they get 31 vacation days!  That is even less than Austria and Portugal which both allow for 35 vacation days (USAToday)

These numbers reminded me that it is possible to be productive and still take time to enjoy life, so I dove in.  Over the Fourth of July, I officially started my summer long vacation.

Week One

I was work free the entire Fourth of July weekend to get in the mode.  On Tuesday, I began my vacation/work schedule.  The first day of “work” I over did it, getting caught up in old habits.  Instead of respecting my boundaries, I sat at my computer for 12 hours!.

When I inspected the work completed, however, I saw how ineffective I spent my day.  I got lost on the internet several times, found myself on Facebook re-reading posts, and didn’t even answer all my emails.

Not only that, I found myself resisting vacation activities. For example when my sister asked if I wanted to take a day off the following week, my initial reaction was, “No, I’m busy” or “I have to work.”  I had to fight not to say either of those.

Instead I said, “Let me get back to you.”  When I cleared the resistance, I found I couldn’t wait to spend the day with her.

Lesson One

Working like you are on vacation means boundaries.  It means hard start and stop times.  It means respecting time, not wasting it.

I’m sure more lessons will come and I will keep you updated on my progress.

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