Well the work week is officially done and in 26 hours we will be in route to OAK for travels to Maui (with tomorrow being prep day for vacation)... So I say its fair to FINALLY get excited! :) Several years ago I read somewhere (not sure where or what book) the importance of being ‘present’ but more importantly the importance of not allowing your happiness to be based on circumstance. For example, many people grow up with this idea of a ‘perfect’ life, and this causes them to always be out chasing the next best thing, in search of happiness. You hear it all the time... “Oh life will be so much better when I get this job” or “I know I will be so happy when I am am married w/ children and have my own family” and then “Oh I can’t wait until the kids are all grown up so we can travel” OR “Counting down the years to retirement so then I can start living...” OR (I love this one) “Omg I can’t wait for vacation in 6 more months - I’m counting down every day”....
Get the picture? So we have this idea of what our life needs to look like for true happiness, peace of mind, success, joy, pleasure and so on... The issue with this is we get lost in the search for something else, something more, some place, some person, some relationship, some thing, some idea... that we loose sight of what is right in front of us.. the journey. I read a quote recently that said something along the lines of “set your life up so that you don’t need to escape from it” I don’t think this is saying “don’t vacation” but more so - set up your life - and yes - take vacations - but set your life up in a way that it is more of an added bonus, an extra pleasure, not something you need per say, or better yet, something that once it is planned it consumed you and it is all you think about until it happens, and then your sad when it ends only to plan your next one so that you can spend the next 6 months living for it to come. It's as if we almost get stuck in the waiting game... a long and depressing journey of waiting - waiting - and still waiting... Always waiting for the next circumstance that will "really" bring us joy...
Am I making sense? It’s kind of like the “dreaded Mondays” and the type of person who lives stuck in the weekends, impatiently counting down from Monday morning until Friday evening after work. Sounds exhausting to me... and quite frankly - I know it is - because I used to do it. I’m not saying I am perfect & have totally escaped this mindset ... but I think that overall I am learning and getting better and better.. This vacation is solid proof. Planned & booked three months ago - we allowed ourselves a moment to be excited, and then we tossed it on the back burner... Three months is a long time jam packed with a lot of other important living to do! Even in the last week when everyone was like “Omg aren’t you so excited?!?!” I honestly really wasn’t.. and not because I am not thrilled at the idea of this week to come - because I am - but in the moment, in the week, in the days... I had my focus elsewhere.. On the tasks at hand, on the people I was with, on the jobs I was doing.
I guess the thing is that whatever book I read that discussed the importance of CHOOSING happiness, and learning to be in control of your happiness meter and not allowing your happiness to be circumstantial... really dug deep for me...Since that read I have made an honest commitment to constantly striving to be in control of my happiness, and not allow it to be based on circumstance. Truthfully, as I said above- I am definitely NOT perfect... definitely flawed... still had my tests... Passed some - failed some... but all in all ... I definitely feel complete and utter appreciation for having been given the opportunity to practice this mindset, and to recognize that I create my ultimate reality. This has allowed me to be a much happier person in general, but more importantly to really appreciate the journey, what I have today, who is in my life today, what my life looks like today, and it has also helped me learn how to be present in the moment today - knowing that when tomorrow comes (like in 26 hours when I am on vacation) I can be present in that moment, and simply enjoy it as it unfolds as well! :)
As I write this I am actually having an “ah-hah” moment, and realizing some areas in the past several months where I didn’t do as great of a job applying this principal; however, my ability to apply it to vacation and reflect on it has been a wonderful reminder, so that I can consciously commit to applying the mindset to other facets of my life moving forward... and I very much look forward to the journey.