I have a confession to make. I went on a two-week vacation to southeast Asia. By myself (mostly). No spouse. No kids. I’ve never done that before.
And, I’ve never been on a two-week vacation. Ever.
My trip was not entirely solo. The first four days and the last two days I was on my own. In between, I had the delightful opportunity to vacation with one of my closest friends, who is an expat in Malaysia for a few years.
And while I was away, my brain was washed.
My brain was seriously cleansed. It was as if a power washer shot sudsy water through all of my neuropathways, rinsing away the cobwebs, the thought patterns that don’t serve me well, the beliefs that hold me back (yes, I have those, too!).
And at every turn, I was fully present. Not half-at-work, half-on-vacation. Totally, 100% present and checked-in in vacation mode.
▪ Bargain hunting at markets in Bangkok.
▪ Cocktails on a helipad in Kuala Lumper with a beautiful view of the Petronas Towers.
▪ Beautiful sunsets on the beach in Borneo.
▪ Scuba diving off a remote island in the South China Sea.
The experience served me well . . . and I can’t help thinking it would serve you well, too. I disconnected with my everyday life like never before and went “all-in” in vacation mode.
This is so counter to the way Americans usually vacation (picture a laptop at the beach and a smartphone on a trek through the jungle!).
And here I am, several weeks on the other side of my vacation, and my brain is still (mostly) clear. Now that I’ve had this massive reset, it is easier to catch counterproductive thoughts or behaviors as they begin to emerge . . . and kick them to the curb.
My wish for you this holiday season is to for you to get some brainwashing of your own. Whether it is truly a two-week vacation like mine was, or whether it is time you cherish with your family, or even simply an hour or two building a snowman with your kids.
Let go of everything else.
Be completely and utterly present.
Whether you can check out of your regular life and into vacation mode for two weeks, two days, or two hours, carve out the time to make it happen.
You’ll be glad you did!