Are You Vacationing "Right"?

I was scrolling through Facebook when I came across a sponsored post from Forbes.com promoting their latest article: “Millennials Suffer From 'Vacation Shame': Here's What It Is And Why It Happens”.  

“Yes!!!!” I thought to myself “I’m not the only one that’s noticed this trend!”

Now I’m not including the link to this article for a very specific reason.  The article was NOT about the very trend I thought I had discovered.  This article was all about how Millennial’s are afraid to take vacation time.  What I want to talk about is how I’ve recently noticed that I find myself feeling guilty for not vacation right.  Any time not spent seeing the sights and checking off a bucket list is waste of time.  

It seems that we've all started to carry around a whole bunch of Shoulds.    

We all have our very own customized Shoulds.  These are the things you tell yourself you SHOULD be doing.  They are very tricky creatures because they can seem like they’re in your best interest in reality it’s just another excuse for your ego to judge you.  

Examples: 

  • I SHOULD really go to the gym tonight.
  • I SHOULD take out the garbage.
  • I SHOULD make lunches for the week.

BTW, Unsurprisingly, the Shoulds also show up as Should Nots, or Shouldn’ts.

Last month, I went on my city and apartment hunting trip to North Carolina and South Carolina.  I hesitate to call this a vacation because I was on a mission to find my new home, but regardless, I still had time off from work and I was on my own schedule.  I even went on this trip solo so I truly didn’t even have to consider anyone else's needs.  This trip was all about me and for me.  

But the Shoulds would not leave me alone.  Telling me to set an early morning alarm, forcing me to see a minimum number of apartments per day, and when I was tired they judged me for not truly experiencing whatever city I was in.  

I didn’t realize how much this train of thought was exhausting me until the last day of my trip when I finally took a break to have a green juice and sat for a moment under the sun.  As I reflected on the past 5 days, I realized I only had worked out just once and at no point did I even attempt to write or journal.  I was disappointed. 

The Shoulds were telling me there was no time.  That there was only one way to successfully find a new home.  That all energy must be used for this one task.  That being tired was for the weak.  

So.  

Much.  

Judgement.  

Here I was with 5 whole days off work, road tripping around the south, and I couldn’t find the time for self-care, to work on my passion, or even to simply ask myself what I needed in that moment.  

I was so focused on vacationing "right" that I completely forgot to be kind to myself!  I apparently left my inner guide at home while my ego took a first class trip to be with me at all times.  

I bet you can relate.  Have you ever found yourself feeling guilty for simply wanting to stay in your hotel room and read all day surrounded by a pile of pillows?  Ever find yourself sick and so embarrassed to fly all that way for nothing?  

I have a strong feeling this isn't just me so if you can relate, I'd love to hear your story.  Post in the comments below or feel free to message me over on Facebook.