Over my holiday since end of December and until now, I’ve had my cousin here in Sydney visiting me. It’s been great to have a small piece of my family here to share the holiday season with. We’ve been on a tight but fun schedule so she would get to see and experience the most of Sydney and Australia.
I’ve been having this uneasy feeling though as if I should be doing something else. Taking this much time away from my normal routines has been hard. Being on a holiday should feel great right? I’m not saying it hasn’t been great, it’s been awesome spending time with my cousin and share laughs and enjoying each others company. But is the uneasy feeling a result of the activities I’ve been doing? And that I’m actually enjoying my routines more than what I’ve been doing on my holiday because my routines are moving me forward on a recently found path which is in line with my purpose…? So me taking time off my routines to do what “you’re supposed” to be doing when you’re on a holiday, has really been me going off my path.
I believe in a balance with everything. Yes, I do believe taking time off from our routines is a good thing but I do also believe that we can take time off and still be in line with our path and purpose. We don’t need to engage in activities everyone else does on their time off. Sometimes we cannot enjoy our time off because the voice in our head is still talking and saying that we should do ‘this and that‘ because we’re on a holiday. But as long as that voice is saying something, we’re not really taking a relaxing time off. And we return tired back to our routines, not understanding why we’re so tired after a 2 week “holiday”.
There are expectations for everything if we decide to follow others’ opinions. Like when showing Sydney to a tourist I should show the Opera House, Darling Harbour, China Town, Botanic Gardens, Manly, Bondi to Coogee walk, Blue Mountains, The Rocks, Kings Cross, Centennial Park, Paddington Markets, go on a Harbour cruise, drink cocktails at the Orbit bar, go to the Zoo, go to the Scientific World, do the hop-on-hop-off bus, Museum of Contemporary Art etc. This doesn’t sound like a relaxed holiday! It sounds like a “must do – list”. No wonder I’ve been feeling uneasy, there hasn’t been any peace of mind.
Peace of mind is reached once time is taken away from the quotation and we let our mind just relax. Let the should-do and must-have voices leave the mind. Have you ever started a holiday with just “lets see what happens”? No pre-planned activities, no lonely-planet says to do this, no we should really do this because… As I’ve tried to make sure my cousin has the best time ever in Australia and gets to experience the most, I’ve exchanged a work schedule with a tourist schedule instead, disregarding the fact that time off my routines should really be time off, not scheduled time exchanged for a different kind of scheduled time.
I know better now for next time. What if your visitors don’t get to see the Opera House or any of the other landmarks of Sydney? Or what if your family doesn’t do any of the things the rest of the families do on their holiday? In the end of the day your visitors or your family and yourself are on a holiday to spend time together, to share laughs and fun. Whatever we decide to do together will still bring us happiness. The happiness we shared, the unexpected adventures we had and the loving fun, will be what is remembered years from now, not the landmarks or the expected holiday activities. It is the feelings we get when we are together that counts, not tourist attractions. The greatest adventures tend to come out of unplanned opportunities.
My next holiday will be totally unplanned. I am already looking forward to it!
“The mind is like a room that is always full with all sorts of stuff. There is no free space there. When it is emptied, it becomes filled with peace of mind.” – Remez Sasson