Friday, July 17, 2015

European Vacation 2015: Intentions

 Photo by Chelsea Laine Francis

Lately I've been preoccupied with a lot of different things and as a result I've put taking care of myself on the back-burner. Planning this Europe trip has been time-consuming, and although it's been exciting it's all been very stressful. Lots of errands, appointments, late nights booking flights/rooms/trains, hours spent trying to find the "right" place to stay, staring at the train booking web site feeling completely overwhelmed. A few nights ago I booked a train for the wrong day and I still haven't figured out how I'm going to get my money back (no, they don't have an e-mail address)! All these little things, plus other life events, have pretty much overtaken and my self-care has gone out the window.

So this brings me to now. It's two weeks before I leave for my trip... Some people say not to have any expectations while traveling, and I do agree with that mindset, so instead I'd like to take a different approach and set some intentions for while I'm abroad. Things to keep in mind, if you will. I'm one of those people that if I don't write it down I will forget.

Many people travel to see the sites. Go to as many attractions as possible. I want to do this too, but more importantly for me this trip is about reflection. I'm definitely in an interesting place in my life right now. I'm on the fence about a lot of things, not sure where I want to go and who I want to be. I believe removing myself from my comfort zone will help me find some clarity. 

Something I started doing when I was going to therapy but lately I haven't been doing it at all. I think meditation is a wonderful thing but I haven't even scratched the surface of being even remotely a little bit good at it. I have the Mindful app but I've been hearing a lot of great things about Headspace so I'll probably look into getting that. Anyone use it? 

I'm going to be in Europe away from all my friends, family, from all the expectations. I can finally let go of all those responsibilities (besides work) and just be. I get really bad FOMO living in Austin and now I won't really have any choice so I'm looking forward to not worrying about everything that's going on back home and just relaxing and enjoying myself... and the view. 

Carpe Diem
Seize the day. Take advantage of my time. See as much as I can. Explore. Walk around. Take tours. Eat. Drink. Laugh. Have fun. 

I'm going to see if I can find a yoga studio or somewhere to practice outdoors while I'm in Florence. How fun would it be to take a yoga class in a foreign country where you don't speak the same language as your instructor?? Well, maybe that sounds sort of stressful... but it could be fun! Like I said, Carpe Diem! Plus I'll be doing lots of walking. I might even look into renting a bike for the month. 

Be Open
Keeping an open mind. I'm going to be in a foreign country alone and I'm sure I'll meet lots of people along the way and be exposed to so many different, places, foods, belief systems, personalities. I want to embrace it all.

 These intentions don't just have to be for when I'm traveling. These are all things I would love to remind myself  to practice in my daily life. So, I hope you find these helpful, because I think we could all use a little more of intention in our lives. What are some of the intentions you try to live by on a day-to-day basis?

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