Break Time

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It’s winter break, a time span of three weeks between semesters one and two. A time to recharge and replenish. And I can’t tell you how happy that makes me. This semester was such a highly intense time of so many things on different levels that I found myself running low on patience too often.

But now it’s the time for me to seriously “break” for a few days. Normally Brett and I would leave right away and go somewhere near or far, to detach as soon as possible. But this year Brett left for North America a couple of days before my semester ended, so I’m here in Sing on my own for a few days of winding down and getting the last bits of organizing done in the new apartment.

At first, I found myself quite uncertain about not joining Brett on the trip to North America. I wouldn’t be seeing my family or his this holiday season otherwise, but now…. now, I’m a bit relieved to have been absent from the whirlwind of driving to see as many people as possible in the tiniest amount of time. Brett has really jammed a lot in the few days he is there, so he is really taking one for the team this time around! Had I ventured on this trip with him, I don’t think I would have been the best version of myself, on so many levels. I just don’t think it would have been good for me or anyone to go right away! Seeing my family and friends virtually will do until 2017.

bestversionofmyself

I really needed some nothing time before escaping during this break. I’ve had three days and I’m still not to the nothing part, but I’m getting there, and let me tell you – it feels glorious! Shouldn’t be long until life is sorted and before I know it, Brett and I will be headed to Bali for some quiet time, amazing food and rejuvenation.

Just what we both need.

 

 

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Keys to Unwinding

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The idea of vacation itself is enough to help us begin to unwind. The fact that you are leaving, detaching from your regular life and daily routines – delicious! Yes, the physicality of removing yourself can be enough at first, but actually, it’s how you spend your time on vacation that is critical to unwinding – I mean really unwinding and unloading your mind.

My mini-vacay to Florida this week served me well in unloading mental stress and refocusing on being mentally clear. I think I was pretty successful at achieving what I went there for.

Here are some keys to unwinding:

1. Go somewhere that forces you to relax. Choose carefully and think about the purpose of your trip (which is probably de-stressing, decompressing, de-elevating, unwinding, searching for mental clarity). Going somewhere that offers tons of activities will keep you too busy. Go to those places when you don’t need to de-stress. Many times people return from vacation saying they need a vacation from the vacation they were just on.

*Note: If you are not able to actually go away-away – by plane, train or car – then find a “redemption place” that is your mental clarity spot. A place you can visit daily if possible.

2. Choose the right amount of time to be away. If you are not away long enough, you will not allow yourself to truly relax.

3. Physically detach from people! Don’t talk to anyone. Seriously, unless you have to. Talking is a really exhausting exercise.

4. Read books unrelated to your job. And read books you’ve had on your shelf for a long time. Let your mind go. Escape into whatever you choose to read.

5. Have a glass or wine, beer, or cocktail a day. One or two – and really enjoy the taste. Enjoy the moments attached – sitting, sipping, not talking, not checking your phone – just being in the moment. Allow yourself to relax with your alcohol instead of getting drunk with it. No hangover this way!

6. Sit. Observe. Try not to judge, but instead, just enjoy watching people. Make up stories about them in your head. Make yourself laugh.

7. Realize when you are ready to participate in interaction again, and do so meaningfully. Say something nice to someone. Offer help. Give up your seat.

Pay attention. Marvel. Savor. This is why you left in the first place. To regain your clarity.