Wife to my high school sweetheart, boy mama to sweet baby boy Macrae, and two fur babies Shiloh and Milo, a full time high school history teacher, and overall enthusiast for life. Avid podcast listener, iced coffee drinker, and organized chaos manager. My passion is to encourage and inspire. To cultivate an intentional life, a life full of joy and an abundance of grace.
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I like to think that I have a constant summer state of mind during the eight week bliss between the end of the spring semester and the start of a new school year in August. I like to think that I engage in intentional rest and investment of self. One of my personal favorite parts of this eight week bliss includes our annual family vacation to Hilton Head Island, a true week of love, laughs, and fun with my husband and my family. It is a week of rejuvenation, rest, restoration, sun, and lots of belly laughs. You can be assured that I leave the week with a very full heart and stomach. **Post updated February 2020.
So, naturally all week long I have been preparing for our beach trip. I have been anticipating what I am going to bring and what we are going to do in order to make sure I checked off all the tasks this week so that my heart and mind and body could be fully prepared for the week ahead. And as I have been running around all week completing these tasks, I have continued to fall back on the same thought,
What if we lived everyday life with the same anticipation and excitement that we feel before an actual vacation.
Now, you may think I am crazy and if you want to be that way go right ahead. But, I truly believe my heart was on to something today when I was thinking and processing this through. In fact, I have been very much looking forward to sitting down and working through my thoughts with my keys all day long, so I am very excited to see where this goes.
I’ll say it one more time just in case you really were thinking I am crazy… What if we lived everyday life with the same anticipation and excitement that we feel before an actual vacation.
Think with me for a moment, pretend you are about to go on a week long vacation and start to create in your mind the list of things that you would do in anticipation and preparedness for that trip. Some of these things might include
So you may or may not do some of these things prior to a vacation, everyone has their own list of what they deem important and necessary, but regardless of who you are, most likely you have some kind of list. And so as I have been (slowly) checking off items from this list this week, I was hit with the bold (and far-fetched) realization of what it would be like to approach every single week as if it were vacation.
Imagine how a week would go for you personally if you were as excited (beach-excited) for a week at work or another week of classes. Imagine the freedom that would be experienced and the release of joy and rest that we would experience by living in a vacation state of mind.
For many, vacations provide a time to reset, reconnect, rejuvenate, replenish, and restore. As well as relax and run free, freely pursuing those things that originally fuel us. Think.. so many times we immediately connect with the original pillars that hold our heart when we have an actual second to think. So what if we created an environment in our everyday life to where we could actually appreciate and rest in a vacation like state of mind. Imagine the position our hearts would be in by the end of the week and every week for that matter.
(Listen, I get it… this sounds so crazy, I understand that… I am a little bit of crazy, we all are) But I just have felt this building in my heart all day and I believe in where this is going. After a vacation, typically most humans feel rested and further encouraged and refined in their identity, their dreams and their purposes. Their reality is assessed and redefined. I dream the most when I have the ability to step away from my normal, but what if we created a new normal that allowed us to equally step away and retreat. What would this actually look like?
And probably the most important thing of all, I feel so many times while leading up to a vacation humans generally have a more care-free aspect to them. People are more willing to extend grace to themselves because “I will be on vacation next week I can take care of it later, etc…” (whatever your dialogue is) BUT this should be something we do every single day. Extend grace to yourself. Do your best, but realize simply by showing up, attempting a smile (whether genuine or not) and putting forth some effort is more than enough. Realize that you are more than enough. So have grace for yourself. When you don’t meet your personal goals or your own quota or criteria, shrug your shoulders, learn a quick lesson to help you develop more as a human, but have grace for yourself. Because we have got to give up on holding on to this expectation of perfectionism that so many of us cling to as a lifeline and a standard of self-worth.
You are worth more than any expectation this world, society, social media sets. You are worthy of more. You are worthy of a life that radiates joy and peace and hope. You are capable of having that. You are capable of living out a vacation state of mind.