How To Enjoy Your Trip When The Odds Aren't In Your Favour
Last week, I managed to squeeze in a day trip in London, England. Taking the train into the city, my boyfriend and I stopped at the London Euston terminal. It didn't take long to discover that the vibe of this trip was already quite different from most of our other excursions. Upon arrival, I felt absolutely exhausted from the long work week and all the traveling the day before. As we started our day, we realized that everything natural was gonna to be pretty much dead, due to the hot weather and lack of rain. A large majority of the famous sights were under construction, not to mention the crazy great temperatures that we were experiencing. All of this was mixed in with the fact that my boyfriend despises the city, and very quickly, we remarked that the odds of having an enjoyable trip were stacked up against us. This being said, by the end of the day, we had some nice moments and were glad to have taken the trip together. I'm thinking that you too, have probably experienced a trip with similar vibes, where either nothing seems to be going right, or all your plans seem to be going down the drain. I want to encourage you, because even when that does happen, there are many ways to take a trip like that, and turn it into something you can enjoy and look back on with good memories. Here are your tips for what you can do to improve your less than ideal vacation. 1. Take photos. Find the things or moments during your trip that you do enjoy and take photos of them. This will allow you to have good memories to look back on, after your vacation is over. Often in hindsight, things seem a lot better than what you experienced at the time, and by doing this, you should look back on those photos in a much more positive light. 2. Set goals but not expectations. By all means, plan for things that you'd like to do or see on your trip, but have the flexibility to accept that you may not manage to see or do everything that you hoped for. Don't expect to experience a certain feeling, as that almost always leads to a certain level of disappointment. Put a plan in place, but take things as they come, setting few expectations in place. 3. Be aware that there may be hiccups. If you can keep in mind that things will rarely go exactly as imagined, you will deal with things a lot more easily when they don't go quite as planned. A flawless trip is next to impossible, so don't plan for a perfect one, but rather a great one. 4. Appreciate the little things. When nothing seems to be going right, redirect your focus onto the little things - the colours in the flowers, the wind on a hot day, the details of the buildings, turning something normal into something fun. Sometimes it's these seemingly insignificant things which turn into the best best memories. One of my favourite parts of London was splashing each other with the water from the fountain - on a hot summer day, there is nothing better than that!
5. Be happy with the things that you can do verses what you can't.
Sometimes, when things don't seem to going exactly as planned, we forget to note all the things that actually are going well. One disappointing moment doesn't take away from everything that has gone well. Try not to lose track of all of the good when something unexpected happens. This is only a hiccup and most of the time, things can eventually get back on track.
6. Try to see things in a positive light.
There are always opportunities to see life with a half empty or half full perspective - no matter how good or bad the situation. Some situations may seem really negative, but in reality, it's not every day that we get to be on vacation. It's much better to use these special times away to focus on the happy and positive things in the moment rather than looking back later, regretting that you didn't enjoy any part of your time away because you chose to be grumpy and negative instead of appreciating the good parts. In almost every situation, one can always find a silver lining. 7. Remember that people are more important than things.
At the end of of the day, nothing that you can have or can potentially experience is worth wrecking a relationship with someone that you care about. Even if things are going poorly, be mindful of your friends or family who may be traveling with you. Harsh words or actions in a stressful situation can have long-term effects beyond the situation. If an experience has become less than ideal, try focusing on the people around you and be grateful for the opportunity to even just spend time together and be extra aware of how you are treating them.
8. Learn to laugh.
I think that some of us can use a little bit more of this concept in not just our travels, but also in our every day lives. Things don't always have to be super serious. Life won't always go exactly as planned, but when we can take things more lightly and learn to laugh at stupid or crazy situations, it lessons the impact, lightens the mood and helps us to enjoy thing even a little bit more. Learning to laugh may not change the situation, but can change your perspective which is sometimes what is needed to make all of the difference.