So, I’m heading on my holidays tomorrow.

By the time you’re reading this, we’ll be well into the autumn and summer holidays 2021 will seem like a distant memory.

We didn’t have a single day away from our home last summer, so this break is long overdue and it has gotten me thinking about what exactly is that ‘holiday feeling’? Are there any ways to keep the holiday feeling in our lives long after the summer break is over?

My contention is there are ways to keep the bliss of a break in our lives when we know, in reality, we won’t have a sniff of a holiday for another 12 months, maybe! I’m all about unpicking our everyday experiences in order to understand why we do the things we do. In turn, this helps us build awareness around our actions and assists us in taking more deliberate action in our lives. Just like I mentioned last time, taking a deliberate action is so fulfilling; it helps us to feel like we’re fully participating in our own lives – not watching as life passes us by.

Deliberate action

Deliberate action helps us realise our purpose, so – with this in mind – I ask myself: why do we enjoy holidays so much?

Well, for me, there’s the wonderful feeling of having nowhere else to be other than where you are. There’s a feeling of being “off duty” – you don’t need to assume any other roles other than being yourself, and there’s no pressure to do/say/act. You can just be exactly as you are and, in a world as demanding as ours usually is, that’s such a welcome relief!

So my enquiry is, why is it only for a couple of weeks per year we prioritise allowing ourselves to feel “off duty” to be in a state of ease? Why is it only for a couple of weeks a year we give ourselves permission to feel like I’m enough as I am?

My theory on it is because we’re led to believe that contentment is to be found in objects, possessions, status and that being busy, busy, busy is something to be glorified. My own experience tells me otherwise – so let’s investigate ways to keep our holiday bliss all year round.


Mindful exercise

Allow yourself to be. When you wake up in the morning, please don’t let the first thing you give your attention to be: what have I to do later today? Instead, the moment you realise you’re awake, direct your attention to: how precious it is to awaken! Breath it in. Remind yourself that this is a new day and it’s so full of potential. Decide there and then what your intention for today is. I usually like asking myself the question: how would I like to feel at the end of this day?

Content? Satisfied? Accomplished? Happy? Loved? Respected? Fulfilled? Like I did something worthwhile?

Whatever answer comes to you, utilise it as you set as your intention and remember it all day long. It will change the way your day unfolds and, as we know, its days that make up our lives – so live each day with intention. You’ll definitely feel more fulfilled and purposeful because of it.

Physical exercise

What is it you like to do on holidays? Getting up early for a walk? Eating well? Spending time with your family?

Whatever it is, see if you can try recreate it in some small part in your every-day life. Maybe get out for a walk in the morning, arrange to share a meal with your extended family or friends on a weekly or even fortnightly basis, or simply sit and read a book.

For me, what feels really indulgent is to just sit and be still. How it is that taking time to indulge ourselves in some non-doing is something many of us only feel like we have time for when we’re on holidays? If we really looked at our every-day life, perhaps we might find we could skip a half an hour of mindless telly and instead give our attention and gain something really positive for ourselves – whether through nature, physical exercise, reading a book and allowing ourselves to be transported to a different world using the wonderful resources of our own imagination rather than absorbing what’s been filtered through a screen. And what’s more, we might indeed find that it’s rather enjoyable and nourishing.

Something to ponder

Don’t wait for those two weeks in the summer to give yourself permission to do the things you enjoy; give yourself a break each day. Grab that book or the runners (instead of the remote control). Release the misconception that there is anything in this life more fulfilling than simply being just as you are, at ease in this moment and, if in doubt, breathe it out.

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Shall we keep going for another little while? Yes, we shall