Vacation, downtime, R&R. Whatever you want to call it, it is no crime to need some time to relax, to forget about work, to forget about money, and forget about the end of the world. I know it and you know it. We all need to take a periodic vacation even if all that means is checking out from our daily chores and simply doing nothing – nothing at all.
Why is this so hard to do? Why is that we feel compelled to work or to stay connected 24 by 7. And who the heck invented that term 24/7 anyway?
Today I would like to muse on our compulsive – and my compulsive – tendency to be active and productive all the time, without hesitation and with nary a break in our routine. Couple that compulsion with modern, 21st century electronics and we have a stressed out, maxed out society where one must ask permission of one’s self to take the teeniest break from the daily grind of work, chores, email, television, and yes, even prepping.
But take a break we must. And here are the reasons why. After a day, a weekend, or, if lucky, a full week or two of of vacation and you can count on:
Less stress: Alas, I am not saying no stress but still, a good rest or vacation reduces stress by removing us from the familiar routine and challenges us to try something new. During a vacation, we are more likely to unwind, relax, and put anticipated threats out of our minds.
A fresh outlook: Looking at old things in a new way gives new meaning to the meaningless and perspective to the insignificant.
Balance and variety: Doing a lot of new and different things requires an elevated level of mental and physical stimulation. This in turn sparks curiosity and from there, invention. And what could be better than that?
Increased Creativity: Similar to balance, a good rest help us to reconnect with ourselves, operating as a vehicle for self-discovery and sparking that hidden source of creativity within us. This moves us one step closer to feeling our best.
Fostering healthy relationships: Spending time enjoying life with loved ones can keep relationships strong, helping you to enjoy the good times more as well as helping you through the stress of the bad or not-so-good times.
Introspection and Solitude: A vacation is the perfect vehicle for a personal, internal adventure. A break gives you an opportunity to be alone to solve personal problems or simply enjoy yourself. Solitude is not just a luxury; it is necessity.
Personal Pampering: You don’t need to spend a lot of money to pamper. Just stepping aside from your daily routine is a splurge of the highest order, giving you time to think about your dreams, treat yourself as you deserve to be treated and well, simply to elevate your little world to one of momentary importance – at least to you.
Freedom: A vacation or restful break puts you in control. You can do what you want when you want albeit for a very short period of time. For a brief moment, you can escape the time pressures of the modern era and rediscover the joy of a simpler, more sustainable lifestyle.
In a world that is always on and always connected, it is easy to lose sight of simple pleasures: a walk on the beach, an evening sunset, the quiet reassurance of another hand on yours. Instead, we have an urgent need to know it all, to see it all, to feel it all. We never stop for there is always more to do, more money to be made, and, admit it, appearances to keep.
Enough is enough, I say.
I know for sure that I need a break since it has been too long since I have felt the freedom, the balance, and the introspective solitude that comes from a restful break. So I just might take my own advice and simply shut down for a day or two sometime soon. And, maybe, just maybe, I will take a vacation and escape for a few weeks. But regardless of what I do, I challenge you to take a long, hard look at your own life.
Are you burned out? Tired all the time? Lacking motivation? Then please consider a rest, a break, or a short vacation. You can do this in your own home. at a nearby campsite, or, if your budget allows, an exotic vacation paradise or a cruise ship. Whatever your choice, just do it! The result will be simply amazing!
Enjoy your next adventure through common sense and thoughtful preparation!
Bargain Bin:Today I am sharing links to some of my own personal prepping purchases. Take a look around – everything is Survival Woman approved.
Sabre Family Home & Property Protection Pepper Spray: I am a big fan of pepper spray. Wasp spray works too but I prefer the convenience of this can that can be mounted next to my door.
Fiskars 7855 8-Inch Hatchet: I think a common mistake is to pick up a cheap hatchet from Harbor Freight and call it a day. This is something you do not want to skimp on. A Fiskars is easily sharpened and will last a lifetime. For less than $25, what is not to like?
Rothco 550lb. Type III Nylon Paracord: As far as I am concerned, paracord ranks up there with duct tape and zip ties. I wish I had know about this stuff years ago.
Volcano II Collapsible Cook Stove: I love my Volcano Stove. So easy to use and it folds up to nothing in its own carry bag.
Lodge Logic 12-Inch Pre-Seasoned Skillet: This purchase changed the way I cook. I se my cast iron cookware for everything from salmon, to bacon and eggs, to biscuits. For under $20, there is not excuse not to own this survival basic. Don’t forget the Lodge Set of 2 Pan Scrapers, a must have for cleaning those food bits from your cast iron cookware.
Lodge Logic Pre-Seasoned Cast-Iron Camp Dutch Oven: My second piece of cast iron cookware. Great when used on the Volcano II Stove.
Kingston Digital DataTraveler Flash Drive: I have at least a half dozen of these flash drives. They are perfect for storing copies of your vital documents as well as emergency contact numbers and photos of family members and pets. This particular 4GB flash drive is currently $8.10 with free shipping. For just a bit more, you can get the 8GB version which is a better value.
Mylar bags & Oxygen Absorbers: The current price for 20 gallon sized bags plus 20 oxygen absorbers is $14.46. I have seen the price of these come down over the past few months – this is about $5.00 less than I paid.
MAGLITE XL50-S3016 LED Flashlight: I own a number of these. Small, sturdy, and easy to handle.