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5 Reasons a “Stay-cation” Might Be For You

5 Reasons a “Stay-cation” Might Be For You

Is everyone around you leaving to take vacations and you feel left out? Not quite in your budget this year for a full-blown vacation? Why not try a “stay-cation?” There are plenty of reasons why this is an ideal choice.  Let’s start with 5 of the best reasons.

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    1. Refreshes your mind

    It is important that your mind-set is geared toward a vacation. If you view a stay-cation as though you are just home hanging out for a few days, you won’t experience the rewards you can reap from this adventure. Look forward to this time exactly as you would for an extended vacation. Clear your mind and schedule of the things that preoccupy your time during ordinary days.

    If your budget allows, it is an added bonus to stay at a local hotel or bed and breakfast. This isn’t necessary to do, however by doing so, you are not in your home and distracted by daily living. The goal is to keep yourself distracted from the daily grind so that your mind and body have a vacation.

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    Tip: Check out local newspapers or discount ticket places online such as Groupon or Wag Jag to see if you can find any exciting offers to events or places in the area.  I have been able to find cheap tickets to Broadway Productions and vineyards and other events near my area. Make sure you research things before your stay-cation so you have things of interest to do.

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      2. Be a tourist in your own town

      We all live busy lives running here and there, spending countless hours working, and balancing a home and social life. How often do we drive by a place in our own town and think, “hey, that looks like a cool place to check out?” However, weeks and months go by and we never really fit it into our schedule. A stay-cation is the perfect time to be a tourist in your own locality!

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      Check out all the things that your vicinity offers and pick out a few of them to explore. You might want to try a new restaurant. It’s fun to pretend you are visiting from another place and critique new places of interest. Observe the area you are living in with fresh eyes just like an outsider would do. It’s amazing how different we view our surroundings when we look at them as though we have never seen them before.

      Another benefit of becoming a tourist in your own location, is you learn the history and stories of the area you call home. It’s so nice to be able to share random facts with others when they come and visit you from another area! Be as creative as you like in your expeditions of your area. Grab your camera and shoot some amazing footage of where you live!

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        3. Travel time is minimized

        Are we there yet? Thirty minutes later; are we there yet? We have all experienced those long car rides where we just can’t wait to get to the destination. The miles slowly go by as get closer and closer to the vacation spot. When you take a stay-cation you can avoid being stuck in traffic and endless hours of travel time. All the time that would be consumed travelling, whether by car or another means, can be used actually doing activities locally.

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        This adds precious time to the limited time that you have. By exchanging the long trip with remaining local, this also allows you to be refreshed without the feeling of exhaustion from hours of travel. Your stay-cation can start right away not hours after a major road trip. Don’t forget that it is the same for the return home. You won’t have to pack up and face another long journey in the car but rather you can squeeze out more hours of enjoyment of your stay-cation.

        4. Works great for a weekend

        I remember one time wanting to go visit a place but I didn’t have any extra days left to take off at work. After counting the amount of time needed to travel to and from the destination, I realized it really wouldn’t be worth it just for a weekend  because I wouldn’t have time to actually relax and enjoy the visit there. Feeling a bit discouraged, the idea popped into my head, why not take the weekend and have a stay-cation instead? I wouldn’t need to ask for vacation days from work and yet I would be free to enjoy my weekend as though it were a mini-vacation. I fell in love with the idea of stay-cations after taking my first one. It is refreshing to take a couple of days off without focusing on work or home. A stay-cation is a perfect way to do this.

        5. Cost

        It isn’t necessary to spend hundreds or thousands of dollars for a vacation. If you choose a stay-cation you will be curbing the cost. Some of the costs that will be slashed or even eliminated will be the expense of traveling, (especially with the current prices of gas) the expensive  accommodations, and the cost of eating numerous meals out. I know that I have taken trips where before I have even reached my destination, I will have spent extra money for snacks on the way and stops made at rest areas. These are all savings for you when planning a stay-cation.

        You can take a stay-cation on any level of budget. There are plenty of events in your local area that are inexpensive that you can look in to. As a matter of fact, I just received an email last night about a local bowling alley that is offering two weeks of “free” bowling, you only have to pay for the shoes!  If you investigate venues in and around your area you will find opportunities that exist that many never even stumble on. The communities where we live enjoy bringing in people from their area.  This is a way of free marketing for them. If they offer discounts and specials to those that live in the area it will boost their sales in the long run. Investigate cost-cutting ways to make your stay-cation an enjoyable time.

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        I have shared 5 reasons a stay-cation might be for you but really it is up to you. You need to do the investigative work on the area you live in. Seek out your interests and find venues that cater to it. More than likely you will find more than enough to fill a one time stay-cation. I also have discovered that there are different types of activities available at different seasons.  As for me, well, I am already planning another stay-cation. This one will be for Autumn!

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          Last Updated on December 2, 2018

          How to Flow Your Way to a More Productive Life

          How to Flow Your Way to a More Productive Life

          Ebb and flow. Contraction and expansion. Highs and lows. It’s all about the cycles of life.

          The entire course of our life follows this up and down pattern of more and then less. Our days flow this way, each following a pattern of more energy, then less energy, more creativity and periods of greater focus bookended by moments of low energy when we cringe at the thought of one more meeting, one more call, one more sentence.

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          The key is in understanding how to use the cycles of ebb and flow to our advantage. The ability to harness these fluctuations, understand how they affect our productivity and mood and then apply that knowledge as a tool to improve our lives is a valuable strategy that few individuals or corporations have mastered.

          Here are a few simple steps to start using this strategy today:

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          Review Your Past Flow

          Take just a few minutes to look back at how your days and weeks have been unfolding. What time of the day are you the most focused? Do you prefer to be more social at certain times of the day? Do you have difficulty concentrating after lunch or are you energized? Are there days when you can’t seem to sit still at your desk and others when you could work on the same project for hours?

          Do you see a pattern starting to emerge? Eventually you will discover a sort of map or schedule that charts your individual productivity levels during a given day or week.  That’s the first step. You’ll use this information to plan your days going forward.

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          Schedule According to Your Flow Pattern

          Look at the types of things you do each day…each week. What can you move around so that it’s a better fit for you? Can you suggest to your team that you schedule meetings for late morning if you can’t stand to be social first thing? Can you schedule detailed project work or highly creative tasks, like writing or designing when you are best able to focus? How about making sales calls or client meetings on days when you are the most social and leaving billing or reports until another time when you are able to close your door and do repetitive tasks.

          Keep in mind that everyone is different and some things are out of our control. Do what you can. You might be surprised at just how flexible clients and managers can be when they understand that improving your productivity will result in better outcomes for them.

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          Account for Big Picture Fluctuations

          Look at the bigger picture. Consider what happens during different months or times during the year. Think about what is going on in the other parts of your life. When is the best time for you to take on a new project, role or responsibility? Take into account other commitments that zap your energy. Do you have a sick parent, a spouse who travels all the time or young children who demand all of your available time and energy?

          We all know people who ignore all of this advice and yet seem to prosper and achieve wonderful success anyway, but they are usually the exception, not the rule. For most of us, this habitual tendency to force our bodies and our brains into patterns of working that undermine our productivity result in achieving less than desired results and adding more stress to our already overburdened lives.

          Why not follow the ebb and flow of your life instead of fighting against it?

            Featured photo credit: Nathan Dumlao via unsplash.com

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