I enjoy traveling.

Traveling lets me get away from the daily humdrum and perpetual rush in life.

Each trip presents new adventures, new discoveries, and new friends.

I was recently away in Italy attending a wedding and took the chance to escape to the beautiful hills of Tuscany.

The need to break away

 I wanted to reset my mind, body, and soul.

 I reflected on how I usually feel before making vacation plans.

Why do we feel stressed, tired, and desperate to vacate our lives?

When I was younger, I did silly things like depriving myself of taking a holiday. Eventually, I chalked up unused vacation time and I got more stressed trying to clear them.

We live in the culture of packing too many things into our minds and physical schedules such that we can’t breathe.

Like an engine, over-usage brings wears and tears.

Secretly, we all want to be heard, to be noticed, to belong and to express ourselves.  This is plain human truth. Sadly, we don’t accord ourselves that right.

We are abusing ourselves and our bodies are calling out for help!

The vacate-effect

For 10 days, I was kind to myself and really “vacated”. It took me quite a few years to learn how to enjoy vacations properly. Somehow when we travel, we allow ourselves to do things that we don’t do in our daily life.

We are kinder to ourselves.

My vacations can take many forms – there were times I ventured into the unchartered territories like trekking on glaciers and dipping my hands into the Arctic ocean; at other times, I engaged in more sedentary activities like lounging by the pool.

These breaks left me recharged and inspired to keep living well. If we only truly live during our vacations, then our lives are tortures. It simply doesn’t make sense.

With further analysis, I identified these vacate-cause-and-effects:

  • Sleep better
  • Eat better
  • Slow down
  • Do nothing
  • Listen to my own thoughts
  • Get new ideas and inspirations
  • Detox digitally
  • Awake our senses

Traveling taught me to live in the present.

Inertia of vacations

Life is short and I refuse to fall back to the perpetual cycle of abuse, only to escape again to heal.

We have been stealing our vacation time by still checking on work during holidays. If this is Newton’s third law in action, then the reverse could work as well for vacation.

As such, I am going to bring bits of the vacate effect into my daily life, a little at a time.

I intend to extend treasured moments of my vacations by,

  • Taking short breaks, such as 10-minute ritual breaks to sip tea, or listen to a couple of songs
  • Eating healthier and regularly
  • Sleeping earlier
  • Looking out for the beautiful things around me
  • Smell the roses, literally
  • Have heartfelt conversations
  • Listen to my own thoughts
  • Be a tourist in my life and look at things with fresh pairs of eyes

And, increase the dosage over time, until I learn to live well again. Actions lead to habits and habits lead to lifestyle.

Perhaps we should all do that – steal minutes from our busy days to smell the roses.

Because we deserve it.


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