It’s safe to say that the vast majority of us spend much of the year looking forward to the annual (or bi annual) holiday.
While I can completely relate to this feeling, it occurred to be that getting into this habit means that we are wishing our weeks away. We are failing to feel any appreciation for the present and wasting many beautiful days and moments because we are so focused on one moment that is yet to come. There is a lot to be said for living in the present and actively taking the time to really appreciate your home, surroundings and friends – as well as indulging in all of your favourite activities or past times!
Holidays are expensive when you are travelling solo, let alone when you have a family so why not plan in a few stay-cations? Here are some tips for having a wonderfully fulfilling weekend that will leave you refreshed and content.
Set the Weekends Aside
We’ve all been there, we muddle through the week lusting for the weekend, and when the weekend gets here……we muddle through the weekend at a slightly slower pace or we rush through trying to cram everything in. Either way, we are subconsciously waiting for Sunday night to roll around again.
Put your stay cation weekends in the diary in exactly the same way that you would put holiday dates in there! This makes you commit to the time and treat it as something special.
Set Your Intentions
Think about what you would like to achieve over the weekend? Do you want to rest and recharge your batteries, focus on your creative side, get back to nature or catch up with friends? If you are bound by a routine during the week, do you want to leave the schedules behind over the weekend and consciously live without a plan?
When we know what it is we want to achieve its harder to be deterred and distracted by friends, family and colleagues.
Make a Plan
This doesn’t need to be a minute by minute schedule, just a loose plan that still leaves you open to spontaneous invitations or ideas. Are there specific places you want to visit, restaurants you want to eat at or has it been a while since you have seen old friends? As long as you have an idea of things that you want to experience, you can make up the routine as you go along!
Do Things That You Love
And don’t be sorry for them – these precious moments are about you (and sometimes the children too!). I personally, LOVE a relaxed leafy woodland hike or walking on the beach and having dinner with friends (and early dinner so that I can have a few drinks and still be in bed by 11!). Think about the things you love, be it a great coffee in a quiet café, a Pilates class, getting your nails done or afternoon tea? If your idea of heaven is lying on the sofa in a pair of leggings and watching friends re-runs then do it! Your vacation is all about leaving behind your normal daily routine and so is your staycation.
But Also Try Something New….
Try to do at least one thing that you wouldn’t normally do on a weekend. A trip to a local theatre, visiting a museum or gallery, a cooking class. Even trying a new restaurant with a cuisine you wouldn’t usually indulge in, a picnic at dusk and an evening under the stars with a blanket and a bottle of red…. Aim for one new experience.
Need some inspiration? Here’s what my latest staycation looked like:
- Met my husband for a drink after work
- Some window shopping and picked up some indulgent dinner items
- Leisurely dinner at home before meeting with some friends for an early drink
- Woke up without an alarm (this weekend we were both asleep before 10pm so was awake by 7:30am!)
- Took a yoga class with Yogia App – they have live streamed and pre-recorded classes, so you can choose one that suits your ability and schedule (they range from 15 to 90 minutes long!)
- Met friends for a walk, coffee and cake in some beautiful stately gardens and antique shopping
- Visited friends for a BBQ (and many!) drinks
- Woke up without an alarm – much later this time
- Went out for brunch (our favourite thing to do!)
- Joined friends for a late lunch at a quaint country pub we’ve never visited
- Took an evening stroll around some local lakes
- Late dinner in the garden and long soak in the bath