Steps to Vacation Without Leaving Home
By Amita Gosh, MS MEd LPCC
We all wish we were able to take a vacation every year. However many are not in that position due to lack of money or time off. Yet, it is still important to be able to walk away from our usual routine and demands, in order to feel rested and rejuvenated. Let’s think of vacation as a state of mind, a restful, enjoyable time when we are able to “vacate” or break from our normal routine. On vacations we don’t have to think about work demands, or chores at home. The idea of “staycation” originated because of these two realities, of needing to escape and not having enough of the resources to do so.
Staycation is exactly that, vacationing while staying at home. This article will give you some idea of how to have a successful and enjoyable staycation that lets you kick back and relax without breaking the bank.
Step One: Select Day and Time
Start by deciding when to have your staycation. Do you want to do it during the usual holidays, or do you want to do it on your normal days off? Scheduling your staycation on the usual holidays often eliminates the problem of having to take extra time off. If time off is an issue, then weekends or your usual days off will need to be the official staycation time. If you have the time available, then decide if and when the children (if you have any) can be off as well. Sometimes it may be a good idea for parents to have a staycation without the children. These can be on weekdays when the kids are at school, in which case, plan for childcare after school hours, so you don’t have to rush back home.
Step Two: Determine a Theme
Once the day or days have been picked, decide on the theme of your staycation. Do you want a spa staycation, a tourist attraction theme, how about a foodie staycation or an active staycation?
Step Three: Identify Activities
Once a theme has been selected, make a list of activities you have always wanted to do but never got a chance to do before when you were busy. For example, if your theme is active/physical and you wanted to explore a nature preserve in your town, put that on your list. Or if your theme is a spa staycation and you wanted a hot stone massage put that on your list. List the tourist attractions in your town that you have not had a chance to visit; I hope you are getting the idea now.
Step Four: Get Prepared
Once your list is made, estimate how much time and money it will cost, and start a savings plan for it. Don’t forget to budget in the cost of child and or pet care as well. The week prior to your staycation, get all your household chores done so you are not tempted to do these during your time off.
Step Five: Announce it and Save the Date
Finally, the most important part is to let people know that for the next few days you are unavailable, because you are on vacation. Schedule it and save the date as a priority. They don’t need to know exactly where you are going until you return.