My New Vacation Mantra

My New Vacation Mantra

This week I’ve looked for inspiration while preparing for some special visitors. Over a period of seven days, eleven loved ones (nine adults and two children) from four different states will join me for a staycation celebration. After my Christmas hospital escapade, I am beyond excited to be healthy and ready to enjoy my family.

True to form, Planner Becky started thinking through each day and everyone’s preferences:

—what foods they like
—what activities they enjoy
—what pace they like to keep

As I felt my anxiety begin to build, I stopped my list-making to consider the words of the title of my new favorite book, Present Over Perfect, by Shauna Niequist. Maybe I needed to reset my thinking about the role of perfection. So I asked myself:

What’s the most important thing? What matters most to me about the special gathering?

When I thought about it, it was pretty simple. I want everyone to get to know each other a little better. I’d love to know what’s on everyone’s radars—both the joys and the struggles. After all, how can we support one another if we don’t know what’s going on?

And of course I want everyone to have fun and make some great memories.

But how? How can I let go of the planner/perfectionist in me to be present and absorb all I want to learn? Then I remembered the comforting words of philosopher Mark Nepo:

One key to knowing joy is being easily pleased.

Yes! That’s the mantra I needed. But my family needed to know about it too, especially since I’m usually the “hostess with the most-est,” with daily menus, schedules, and pre-planned activities.

To get us on the same page, I emailed them and told them about my goals and my new “present over perfect” mindset, with options instead of schedules. Then I added,

. . . Our mode for traveling? Let’s try to be #EasilyPleased. Pretend you have a pair of super-cool expensive sunglasses with custom lenses that allow you to adopt an #EasilyPleased attitude. I hope you’ll wear them! ☺

I’ll let you know how it goes!

How about you? What “lenses” or mantras do you use to prepare for family vacations? Tell me about it. I’d love to know.

My best – always,

Becky  (Nana B)

P.S. Also, thank you so much for all of your emails of encouragement after last week’s To Fake or Not To Fake” column. Your stories and suggestions were thoughtful, heartfelt, and helpful. From time to time, I’ll share some “mojo motivators.”

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