If you paid attention to everything that crossed your path, you would never get anything done. Heck, if you are on your phone, chances are you can’t get anything done, lol!
One of the great things about taking a vacation is the clean break you can make from your daily life. Daily life, especially now in the information age, is filled with distractions. Distractions are not just memes, videos, or the never ending barrage of news that gets practically streamed into our brains 24/7 – but your work, your routine, and your daily chores too.
More than likely we are working on things now to provide for something greater in the future – making the trade of our time and effort now for a better future. Sometimes, the things we are doing are not what we would want to do if given a better alternative, so we are grinding away in hopes of a better tomorrow.
A vacation gives you a temporary reprieve from the grind, and allows you to do whatever you want to do. It is kind of a like traveling in time – as you get to experience what you may hope to experience after your grind is done.
So take advantage of the vacation blinders, and see what you enjoy doing, thinking about, your emotional state, and your physical well-being. For me, vacations are about experiencing adventures and relaxation. I enjoy adventures like scuba diving, hiking, animal encounters, and sometimes high thrills like sky diving, roller coasters, and the like. Usually these are followed by periods of relaxation: massage, sitting in a pool or a sauna, or laying by the beach.
While on vacation, I still stick to the same diet and exercise routine (or as close as possible), and tend to get more sleep than usual. I do my best to keep the phone away from me, and have muted all notifications, only allowing important messages to sneak through at specified times. But I would be lying if I said I didn’t catch myself checking out my phone every so often. On some vacations, I’m fortunate when there is no internet available and get to fully live the world behind.
As someone that does most of their work online, its a mixed bag. Being able to work remotely can be a curse and a blessing. A blessing in that the freedom it provides in not being tied to a physical location, and how automation can simplify many things. But a curse in that you always have things to work on in the every changing online world, and you can always work on it too.
So the true vacation for me would be one with no internet and no phone – just being completely cut off. I have done this several times when doing liveaboard dive boats, and it’s nice. Although dive boats tend to have their own grind, in that the schedule can be pretty rigorous (diving 4-5 times a day for 45-60 minutes at a time is pretty demanding), its purely a physical stress that only lasts as long as the dive, which in itself is exhilarating. There is no worrying about finishing a project, or turning something in on time – just about doing the physical activity.
It reminds of my teenage years when I would do wrestling camps. The camps themselves can be quite grueling, but the only stress was physical. It was just about being prepared to handle a physical challenge, and that was it. It makes life so much easier to deal with it – and I think that is the point.
For thousands of years, survival was just that – being able to deal with physical stresses. For the most part, that meant building a shelter, and getting food and water. If you accomplished that, you are good. You didn’t have to worry about filing TPS reports, sending out bill payments, or worrying about your grades. These are mental stresses that we have created for ourselves in the new modern world.
Unlike physical stress, which only lasts as long as the activity, mental stresses follow you around. It can be hours, days, weeks, months, or years before or after the stressor. They are the most difficult to deal with, as they are ethereal. They are anchored into reality solely by your brain.
So when I speak of vacation blinders, I mean blocking out all of these mental stressors or first world problems, and just focusing on physical stresses (ideally of your choosing). I feel it can help you get in touch with the real you, and perhaps you can find ways of realizing that many of your problems that haunt you aren’t really everything they are made up to be in your mind.
Of course, that assumes you are fortunate enough to go on a vacation. In my mind, the only real problem is survival. If you have a roof over your head, food, and water – everything else is just gravy. If I don’t have means of providing shelter, food or water – then I need the stress to push me to come up with a plan and take action to survive.
But if my survival is not a concern with the stress (my neighbor’s dog is shitting on my lawn for example), that is not something I should lose sleep over.
I don’t pretend to know it all, and I could be completely wrong. I’m just giving you my take. If you agree with me, or would like to, I can give you the opportunity to test it out with me in Costa Rica in just a few months from now, from April 9-16th.
This will be my second retreat in Costa Rica, and we are looking to make it even better than before, which is a high bar! And to address the 800lb gorilla in the room, we have measures taken for COVID already, and our host has already completed the first camp of the year with no issues.
We have an early registration special that ends on January 31st, just a few days from now, that will save you over 25% off. So if you want in, go to the site below to get all the details and register before it ends. I promise you it will be an amazing trip!
What do you think? Do you agree or disagree?
Comment with your take on this. And if you like this article, please do me a solid and share it with your friends. Thanks!