I think I’m a better person when I’m on vacation.
Awhile back–before COVID :(– I was out of town visiting a few friends. I noticed during the trip that I was different somehow, but I couldn’t quite put my finger on what was different. I realized I was more open and relaxed. I was more likely to talk with strangers, and ask questions.
If I could use one word to describe how I was different on vacation, it would be curious. I was in a new place, and I was interested to learn what it was about. I was visiting friends and their families, and I was curious about how they lived their lives. I wanted to know how they grew up, and what their experiences were like. I wanted to see where they went to high school. I wanted to see family photographs.
When I got back to my usual life, I noticed a shift. I was less open and curious. I had my routine, and got back into it. I felt more closed off to the people around me. To be honest, it didn’t feel that great.
When I have lived in a certain place for a while, I tend to get into a habit of doing things a certain way. I get used to it, and I go on autopilot. Things stay the same, and I stop growing, learning, and exploring.
I don’t want to live my life that way! I want to be continually growing and learning. I want to be open to new friendships and experiences that might come along. I want to be curious about other people and their experiences. I want to channel my “vacation self” into my everyday life.
Do you get into a pattern in your life and then just stick to it? Is it possible to remain open and curious, even in day-to-day life?