Making the best of holidays


A perpetual holiday is a good working definition of hell. George Bernard Shaw

For those who are wondering why this blog has not been updated, let me clarify that I was on a holiday in Mysore and Waynad (Kerala). While it was a  well planned and refreshing break, I did occasionally feel guilty that I was not updating the blogs and in rare moments of boredom, did miss the fast pace of professional life. I thought it appropriate therefore to share my views on the above quote on holidays and put matters in perspective.

With very rare exceptions, almost every human being has at some point in time yearned to take a long holiday, preferably a perennial one. The idea of a holiday is often too simplistic and is often simply interpreted as ‘doing nothing’, ‘lazing around’ just relaxing’ or ‘doing just what I want’. Some of us could possibly have undergone a forced holiday due to a job loss or having to quit a job for reasons beyond ones control or forced into taking sick leave to recoup from some major illness but the stress that accompanies such holidays makes it a psychological torture. There could also be a miniscule lot who have taken voluntary retirement with no clear plans as to what to do next. The common thread in all these holidays is that ‘Time suddenly seems to weigh heavily’ on us and the uncertainty of how to while away ones time suddenly becomes an ominous dilemma.

A good holiday therefore should be one that is discerned, earned and planned. While some holidays could be thoroughly enjoyed when they are spontaneous and sudden, the real fun of a holiday is in selecting the right time of the holiday, the type of holiday sought and in ensuring that it is something that will bring pleasure, relaxation and a lingering pleasure. This is tricky especially if it is a family holiday for each member would have different expectations and ideas about the holiday. Discernment then is all about finding the right balance and consensus. Anyone with money can afford to simply splurge on holidays and possibly have a lifelong holiday. The reality is that hardly anyone does it because the real fun of a holiday is when we are convince we truly deserve a break, a change of scene and e do not feel guilty of taking off without having complete the expected chores expected of us. Holidays should elp one unwind, enable all who are holidaying to experience a different high and most of all help one soak in the moment, the pleasure and the leisure.

The kicker in any holiday is the fun of planning it out; the thrill of exploring possibilities, fitting it all in within a time and budget constraints and ensuring that we do not miss out on anything. While the intent is right, the reality is that the planning involves a lot of stress, fortunately most of it is positive stress, and it helps us connect with our human self through varied emotions of hope, frustration, joy, regret, confusion, frustration, and ecstasy when one puts it all together. More than anything else planning provides purpose and goals which keep us focused and provides us the carrot of motivation, the pleasure of anticipation, the wonder of experience and the thrill of achievement all of which adds up to make an enjoyable holiday.

If you just take of on a holiday and if that is a long drawn one, then after the initial euphoria of being a free bird is over, the lack of goals, the absence of a sense of purpose, the monotony of trying to battle with time and frustration of not achieving anything worthwhile will make life painful, boring and tortuous; something akin to hell on earth.

Remember: Every man who possibly can, should force himself to a holiday of a full month in a year, whether he feels like taking it or not. William James

Try this:

  1. Make a list of the various types of holidays you would like to ideal take. A couple of ideas are given below for your ready reference
  • Visit the wildlife
  • Explore the mountain side/ valleys
  • Go trekking
  • Explore the wonders overseas
  • Go back packing/ cycling
  • Make a religious tour
  • Spend time with tribals
  1.  Analyze the last holiday you had and list our 3 good things and 3 things that you could have planned better. Now work on a 2 week holiday plan to be executed before the end of  May 2012.

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com 

You are also invited to visit our weekly Inspirational and Motivational Blog www.poweract.blogspot.com

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