“So, when’s your next holiday?”
A colleague or friend has probably asked you this question at one time or another, and it gets pretty awkward when your answer is a non-event. The truth is, between finances, work commitments and health issues, taking a vacation can be the last thing on our minds. This means the concept of travelling anywhere nationally or (gulp) internationally is more of a far-flung dream than a goal.
Thankfully, there’s a solution.
The staycation is a way of holidaying right where you are. And no, I’m not making this up. The dictionary defines it as “a holiday spent in one’s home country rather than abroad, or one spent at home and involving day trips to local attractions”.
We all need a holiday to break up the mundane cycle of daily life, and planning a staycation means we can do just that at little or no cost, and with no extra stress about taking time away from the kids, work or missing important appointments.
Is a staycation on the cards for you? Here are the four steps you need to ensure a great day, or weekend, off.
1. Make time in your week
Choose a weekend or one day in the week to have your stay-cation, and stick to it. Avoid making any appointments, and if anyone asks, tell them you’re busy. A staycation is your invitation to rest and get away from it all—even if you stay at home.
2. Take care of any distractions
Our day is normally broken up by phone calls, unexpected Facebook messages and family, friends or kids needing our attention. During your staycation, turn off your phone and avoid Facebook. If you have kids, plan a family-friendly activity, or ask a friend or relative to care for them.
3. Plan some activities—or don’t!
There is no set agenda to a staycation—you can do anything. If you like activities, plan a night away camping or at an inexpensive motel. If you’re staying at home, go on a day trip to a near-by town, do some shopping or go see a movie. If you’d rather a sleepy day where you wake up late and lounge on the couch, do that instead.
Because staycations aren’t your traditional ‘holiday’, you may feel guilty or unsettled at the idea of switching off to everyone and everything. Give yourself permission to enter holiday mode in these moments. Your staycation is ‘you’ time. Once you’ve carved out the time for it, you’ll feel better emotionally, physically and in your relationships. So what are you waiting for? Go plan a staycation—it may be just what you need.