I’m not the type to “turn off” for long periods. For me, I get energized thinking about life and how to go to the next level.
So now, I’m on vacation. As I “peck,” I’m enjoying a steamy morning in Kemah Texas, at the boardwalk, sipping Starbucks and watching people come and go as this water-side carnival gets geared up for the 600 students that will be arriving in a few short hours. (Yes, 600, I asked).
What I’ve realized on this stint, as I have on others, is that my vacation leaves clues about what I like to do and possibly, what I should be about. Time away from my regular daily grind allows what has been suppressed by my work and life duties to bubble up. But I can’t see those clues until I’m several days in.
Here’s what I mean.
I’ve been on vacation a week now, and this morning, I’m thinking back on what I’ve been doing and most importantly, what has energized me or made me feel alive. Here are a few:
- Rest: On this trip, I’ve gone to sleep when I’m tired and have woken up when I, well, wake up. This is unique to vacations, but it reminds me I need more rest.
- Coaching/Helping: I’m staying with my parents, and we’ve been having a blast. I have been able to help them with some things around the house and talk through some key areas of their life now and the decisions they are making for the future.
- Writing: There is a different world that I enter when I write. For me, it is a wonderland of ideas, images, and possibilities. I am an explorer, and I allow the thoughts to find their way to me. I’ve been lax on this life-giving activity. Time to reengage!
- Simplifying/Tidying: I find that I like organization and things being tidy. I’m not sure that’s a nature or nurture thing, but I can give a massive shout-out to my wife, Kellie for it. This trip, the tidying is coming in two forms.
- First, my computer has been such a mess with extra, unneeded files and pictures that it is making my Macbook operate like a TRS-80. (If you know what that is, welcome to the year Star Wars came out!)
- Secondly, I evaluate what I’m doing in life and run a process that helps me shed work-items that I just shouldn’t be doing. It helps me identify what I need to double-down on and what I need to empower other people to do. This simple process can help whether you’re working inside or outside the home. Here’s a link to the google doc that I use. Email me if you need a better explanation.
- Future Visioning: As I said at the beginning, I think about my life now and what the next chapter (or barrel) looks like. I vision my life based on my gifts, talents, and strengths, and how I can put those in to use to help further the kingdom. Then I make short term plans to move in that direction. This also means that while I’ll be saying yes to some things, I am saying no to others.
Vacation, or any chunk of time away, leaves clues about your life. To discover those clues, ask yourself,
“What have I been drawn to this vacation that afterward has energized me and made me come alive?”