When is the last time you took a vacation? I mean the kind where you are not travelling to go to a conference, wedding, family event, or any other occasion but simply going away from your home to vacate your work, your routine and your space?
For me it has been to many years to admit to and I recently returned from a glorious week on the island of Maui. I have been fortunate in my life to spend some quality time there however this was a first trip for my husband and kids and our first collective trip together to the beach.
Prior to vacating the premises I frantically buzzed in my life to get things done before our departure. Roaring through the house to clean it, doing laundry, and washing linens. Packing up the luggage for myself and the kids, fussing about which books I haven’t read and trying to pick which ones I would take (note I said take & not read). Anxious to make sure that all consults, classes or appointments had been confirmed for my return, email inbox managed, phone calls returned etc etc. However I had planned to take my laptop so that even though I was on vacation I would still be accessible by email and really this would keep one foot on the beach but still have one foot at home. Hmmm a bit contrary isn’t it.
Truth be told, I had forgotten what it was like to really vacate, to abandon my personal routine of coffee & inbox. And even though my intention was to just “be” and go with the flow, I really didn’t have a clear vision of what that would be like. But the environment reminded me quickly brought me present and all I wanted to be was with 2 feet on the beach.
On Day 2 I got connected so I could send out my email blast for my upcoming classes, I decided 15 minutes tops. You know skim read the inbox, send out the email which I had begun to create prior to leaving and poof press send and grab a towel and go.
Day 3 I thought okay just another 15 minutes on the computer as I had difficulty updating my webpage with the class information and the family was moving slowly that morning so I could safely step out of the vacation mode momentarily.
Aha not such the case…in my haste I neglected to provide the most fundamental information and my inbox was flooded with questions like, “I’d love to take the class, when is it being held?”, “I didn’t see a time or date for your classes I’d like to register…” and many variations on the same. It was in that moment as I began to frantically reply that I realized that I had not committed to truly vacating. In fact I thought that I would be successful in being in both places at the same time but my heart, my mind and my body wanted to be at the beach.
After replying to the emails, resending my blast and apologizing for the error, I shut down the computer and put it away in the suitcase only to be brought out to download the pictures off of the camera. This decision was easy, it allowed me to be present, and I chose not to think of what my inbox represents and rather decided to firmly plant both feet! Aloha