Here at Anatomie, our only resolution for 2016 is to truly and thoroughly enjoy our experiences. We have so many opportunities to pause and take in the moment, to really appreciate what is in front of us, or what we have to look forward to. However, all too often we ruin these beautiful moments with worry, camera phones, and over the top expectations. Whether you're planning to jet off to the other side of the world this year, take a quick trip to warmer climates, or weather the winter storms from home- here are four tips to sincerely enjoy your adventures wherever you're at.
The more prepared you can be for a trip the less time you’ll spend worrying over the details. Book well in advance, make checklists, copies of important documents, a detailed itinerary, and do some research about where you’re going. The New York Times
reports that anticipating a vacation may bring you just as much enjoyment if not more than the actual trip itself. Time spent immersing yourself in a different culture such as learning the native language, reading up on the local customs, fashions, and foods, and any other information you can get your hands on will ultimately lead to a more satisfying trip- before, during, and after the get away. This is true for every day life too. The less time you spend scratching your head wondering what you have to do this afternoon, or later this week, the more time you'll have to focus on right now
. Make a running to-do list, look up directions ahead of time, and live in the moment!
While it's a great exercise to plan, we tend to idealize our future experiences and in doing so create unachievable expectations. No matter how much you plan, you can only do so much before you’re in it. The cobblestone streets, tuk-tuks, ancient buildings, savory foods, sensational beaches, intriguing scents, unfamiliar fashions. The culture shock is part of the romance of traveling and while it’s enjoyable to plan a vacation, it can be just as rewarding to soak up a culture by complete blind immersion. Don’t be so attached to your itinerary that you forget to enjoy the little things. Look up from your guide book and really take in the moment- what it felt like to be in this foreign place, at this exact time, as you are now. Gaze at street performers, take note of a special meal presentation, look up at the architecture of a different time. Let this new place surprise you, and allow yourself to deviate from your original plans from time to time. Being surprised isn't limited to new places, try opening yourself up to new experiences at home too. Take the long route home, say hello to a stranger, do something spontaneously. Mix up your routine and you'll be pleased to find how surprising this familiar place can be.
Spend on Experiences, Not Things
The best way to view this is from a point of retrospect. When you come home from vacation, or a stress relieving shopping spree, there’s an initial enjoyment. Of giving gifts, the minimal comfort of plush new things, and the subtle reminder of your time away from the objects you’ve brought back to adorn your home with. But as the memories weather on, so does the happiness associated with the objects. Soon, the objects become clutter and end up as more of an annoyance than an enjoyable memory. When you spend your money on experiences you invest in a story. Tours, excursions, the excitement and rush of something new ultimately cultivates you as a person. Experiences will bring you long term happiness more than any silly trinket ever could. The same applies to saving for a future trip instead of impulse buying those boots, next time you're feeling that impulse itch, think- a night's stay in Cabo, or another pair of shoes.
Put Down the Camera
All too often we view life through our iPhones, fearing that we’ll miss capturing a special moment that we forget to truly experience it the first time around. The result? A fuzzy video taking up what little space is left in our phone and a memory tarnished by impatience and severely lacking in enjoyment. There’s nothing wrong with taking pictures, but while on vacation and in every day life, practice enjoying a moment thoroughly before picking up your camera. Create a memory in your minds eye and let it be your secret. Treasure that moment that only you saw, and experience it over and over again as only you could have.
From all of us here at Anatomie, we wish you a Happy New Year, full of prosperity and enjoyment! Have your own tricks to enjoying experiences, big and little alike? Share with us in the comments below!