The conversation started with one question: “What makes vacation so special?” I’d been feeling a growing dissatisfaction with my daily routines at home and feeling distractions creep in from every direction. I work from home, set my own schedule, and answer only to myself. So then why was it that every day wasn’t perfect?
Maybe you’ve had thoughts like this before. Wondering why if I love yoga so much, I struggle to do it consistently every day. If I know meditation makes me feel so good, shouldn’t it be easy to do it twice a day instead of feeling like a stretch to do it once? And surely my life should feel more like a vacation every day living in one of the vacation capitals of the world.
The “happiest place on earth” vibes must end at the Disney doorstep instead of the city limits.
I had a long conversation about this with my husband this week, and while I can’t say every day is perfect yet, I do have some thoughts to share on how infuse vacation vibrations into your every day.
I’ve come to the conclusion that two primary factors are at play for what makes me feel vacation vibrations: my mindset and my physical space.
Vacation Vibrations Mindset
It’s easy to think that simply relocating your body to a beautiful destination will change your life. But I think we’ve all experienced “real life” haunting our vacations in the mind.
A major component of feeling vacation vibrations happens in the mind. We let ourselves move into a headspace of expecting relaxation, pleasure, and pampering. It feels acceptable to do nothing all day and lounge around, giving care only to feeling good and unwinding. Without permission from yourself to be in that state, it’s all too easy for the mind to wander back to emails or your to-do list.
Where focus goes, energy flows.Tony Robbins
It seems for me that while I have a beautiful home and flexible schedule, something in my mind hasn’t snapped out of the educational and corporate grind mindset that I deeply engrained over the past 20 years.
I believe I have some release work to do around my attachment to time, productivity, and what my day is “supposed” to look like according to some arbitrary authority even if it’s not what’s best for me.
For me, introducing vacation vibrations to my day means deciding how I want to feel and what will make me feel that way — and then making peace with what my day looks like including those activities.
Expectations of Physical Space
I’m certainly not convinced vacation vibrations begin and end with mindset. Some might preach so: that it’s all in your head, you just have to feel it. But for me I know that’s not enough.
When I’m feeling vacation vibrations, my physical space also has a certain vibe. There’s a lightness and spaciousness. Always beauty. And usually a quietness or sense of unplugging.
What I realized about my home that kills vacation vibrations for me is that no matter how beautiful or clean my space is, it’s almost impossible to beat the minimalism and clutterlessness of a spiffy AirBNB or woodsy resort.
I don’t remember a time where there wasn’t a miscellaneous stack of papers somewhere. There’s always clean or dirty laundry to take care of. And even without consciously realizing it, everywhere I look contains a to do list that registers in my subconscious: hang this picture, dust that table, fix this gadget, put that thing away. Never urgent, always present.
In order to bring vacation vibrations into my home full-time, it’s going to take closing the leaks that drip drain my energy just existing in my own space.
During my own exploration into the idea of energy leaks, I’ve found that most things that suck our focus would take multiples less time if we’d just do them.
Don’t adapt to the energy in the room. Influence the energy in the room.Unknown
For example, instead of walking past the basket of clean clothes 50 times and spending a subsequent 2 minutes thinking how how I “should put the laundry away”, I could save myself the 100 minutes of negative emotion and make 10 minute to just put it away.
I spend less time on the chore and feel better more of the time. Mission accomplished.
Not A Slouchy Staycation
Vacation vibrations might mean something different to you, but for me there are certain things I expect in my space that must exist or be sensed in my home to channel retreat vibes.
I want to be clear that I’m not talking about a slouchy junk-food-on-the-couch staycation where I let my brain melt away and just do nothing. I’m talking about living in a space that makes me feel like I live in my own personal retreat bubble. A cozy, calming space that welcomes me to morning tea, afternoon yoga, and nightly reading with ease.
My Home + Vacation Vibrations
My vacation vibration non-negotiables include:
- Release my attachment to time and scheduling and not passing judgement on myself for how my day plays out.
- Get clear on which feel-good activities are priorities for me at what cadence.
- Give myself permission to feel good.
- Maintain an even more meticulous standard of cleanliness that removes ambient clutter.
- Remove distractions that inevitability put me in a mindless rut, namely screens.
- Bring more light, nature, and beauty into my space.
Feel free to borrow these ideas or allow them to inspire you to what makes you feel vacation vibrations.
What Makes Getaways Special
All that said, I do think there’s something inherently special about getting away that’s intangible and impossible to carry over into everyday life.
Physically relocating is oftentimes all the pattern interrupt I need to recognize the ruts I’ve adopted, the habits that no longer serve me, and the clutter (physical and mental) that has marred my “home retreat”. I think variety is healthy to spark new ideas and introduce a little perspective.
Traveling to a beautiful away-from-home setting is also an excellent physical representation of a desired mental state. Sometimes we need a push to take us there and remind us what it feels like to live in vacation vibrations on an actual vacation.
I also think (at least right now) that it’s essentially impossible to remove 100% of the clutter and chores from a home at any given time. There’s something that feels light about going to a minimal space that has empty closets, bringing only the needs of a short time period while knowing your remaining possessions are safe and sound back home. (Here’s looking at you boxes of once-a-year Christmas decorations.)
It’s a magic feeling to temporarily dissociate from what’s regular and step into a blank slate vacation. But I’m on a mission to bring the ease and restfulness of vacation vibrations into my home 24/7 to improve my overall wellness and feel good all the time — not just 2 weeks out of the year.