I’ve decided to move to Maui and open a Shave Ice Shack.
Ok, not really. But I did seriously consider it for a moment when I came back from my (oh-so-luxurious) honeymoon. I was relaxed and refreshed. A little plumper, but happy. Flying back home over the lights of The City of Angels made me question how I choose to live this big city life.
There is something magical about Hawaii. Yes, you’re on vacation but the spirit of Aloha does seem to permeate everything and everyone. There is a pace that is easy and a life that feels simple. I realize that living in Hawaii probably has its own set of challenges. However, I wanted to retain that feeling of “vacation” even when I came home to the real world. At the end of the day vacation is just that, an escape, we can’t hold onto the glow forever but we can sure as hell try.
7 Ways to Hold onto Your Vacation Frame of Mind
1. SLOW DOWN. We all know the Simon & Garfunkel song. It should be our anthem! The pace in Hawaii is slow. People aren’t multi-tasking every second of the day. This is about being present. Do what you’re doing for the sake of doing it. Savor it.
2. Make more time for dolce far niente.
The Italians have a saying: dolce far niente which means “the sweetness of doing nothing.” I feel that for the most part, we Americans consider this wasting time. But what a luxury to waste time! Be spontaneous and above all, have fun.
3. Reap your harvest now.
The American Dream is no joke. It is a gift that we have the ability to achieve everything we want in this country. But it’s not without work. And we take pride in our work.
Do you know that in other countries when they talk about themselves and who they are, they’re job is often 4th or 5th on the list? My question is yes, we work hard- but do you allow yourself to enjoy the seeds you are sowing?
We need to celebrate our successes every day. No matter how small. And celebrate it with the people we love. Put the To Do List on hold for an hour or two. We don’t die with an empty inbox. It never ends, so we must create the time to enjoy our victories or else we are going to wonder where the time went.
Go ahead and use the good china!
4. Be in Nature, Be Alone.
Many of us live in a concrete jungle. But we can’t forget where we came from. As much as your anti-hippie nature might cringe at this, we are part of the Earth. And it’s important to get back to your roots. It’s this connection that will allow you to feel grounded in life. Don’t feel like hugging a tree just yet? Go for a walk! Play in the park! Go take a hike! Literally smell the roses.
5. Do what you love.
I understand it’s not easy to quit ones job and make money doing what they love. But if your job is sucking the soul out of you, then you might want to reconsider the path your on. When you look at the amount of time you spend miserable somewhere, it’s just not worth the paycheck. Stress is a factor in 85% of disease, so if you feel high levels of stress for 8 (or more) hours a day- it is literally killing you. There is always something else you could be doing that you would enjoy more.
At the very least do what you love as a hobby and make it as much of a priority as you do your job.
6. Put the iPad down.
Have you had that experience where you’re in a room with people and everyone is playing on their phone? Sometimes texting someone in the same room? One of the things I realized on my honeymoon was that I am a little bit addicted to my phone. I actually felt weird leaving the room without it. I think the technology is wonderful as long as we don’t allow it to disconnect us.
7. Actually go on vacation.
Take a weekend away if you can’t do more than that. A friend recently told me that the secret to her successful marriage is that her and husband go away twice a year by themselves. Who cares where!? Be a tourist in your own city. Just do it. Going to Hawaii made me realize that getting away needs to be a priority. And it was a good lesson. My business didn’t fall apart. My life was still in tact when I came back and I was the better for it. So, get on Travelocity now and search for your spontaneous way to enjoy dolce far niente.
Photo courtesy of bump.