Sometimes I think the best part of any vacation is simply the chance to take a break from our usual routines and obligations, and to leave behind the stress and worry that normally takes up far to much of our attention and energy. Especially if we have the good sense to actually disconnect from our regular lives by not keeping up with our emails, texts and whatever other form of social media we are in the habit of using.
Maybe it’s just me, but sometimes I have a hard time even remembering all the stuff I’m supposed to be worried about, never mind trying to actually deal with all those problems. Add in the usual busy schedule, caring for the family and friends who need it, and the constant onslaught of negative news, and it’s no wonder that my tiny mind really does struggle to keep up with it all. And believe me, I know there are many, many others whose lives are far more complicated than mine.
Which is why taking a break from it all every now and then is so very important. It’s amazing what a little time spent “off the grid” can do to restore our souls and remind us that life is so much more than a check list of duties and goals that needs to be completed.
Vacations allow us to leave all those worries, schedules and obligations behind, for a least a little while. More importantly, they give us the time to reconnect with our true selves, and if we’re lucky, with the people in our lives who matter the most. And it doesn’t matter if our vacation is long and expensive or short and cheap, as long as we disconnect from our usual routines and spend the time doing something that truly makes us happy. Even taking a long walk in a park or sitting in the sun in our own back yard, happily reading a favorite book can count as a vacation if we need it to. “Stop and smell the roses” is more than just a cliche.
I believe that all of us need a little time off now and then, so we can have the opportunity to listen to our hearts and be reminded of who we really are. It’s far too easy to get so caught up in the frantic pace of our daily lives that we put our minds “in neutral” and spend our days doing little more than completing whatever task is in front of us and then quickly moving on to the next one. But that’s not what life is supposed to be, at least not all the time.
One of my favorite literary characters is fond of saying, “Life is for the living.” And I couldn’t agree more…..