The problem with the idea of ‘relaxing at home’ is we rarely would ever relax. There is always some kind of errand you’ll have to do, someone you’ll have to meet and somewhere you’ll have to be. I’ve tried having a staycation at home before. I ended up cleaning out my closet, going for lunch with friends that ended up taking almost a whole day and decided to surf social media until the wee hours of the morning.
So this time around I was adamant on making my One Day Staycation work. I despise school holiday public crowds and made no plans traveling anywhere, so I picked out one day to be my staycation day and did the following in the days beforehand to ensure there will be no disruptions.
When I got home, I turned my social media off (except for the occasional glances in case somebody caught fire or Kim K gets a divorce. You know, emergency stuff). This included my laptop, because as long as it is on, I will always end up being drawn to do some kind of work (office, writing etc). I then proceeded to make a one-pot meal which I will eat the whole day, because as much as I enjoy cooking, I do not want to be at the kitchen on my staycation (note: this is not the day to experiment with a new dish because that will take time and you might screw it up. Or if you prefer, takeout. I cook because I don't like takeouts).
Then I got comfortable and spent the rest of my day watching Homeland, snacking non-stop, reading magazines, taking a long bath, having a cup of tea while watching the sun goes down from my balcony and wearing a face mask. I know they all sound mundane, but think about it. When was the last time you had the pleasure of enjoying your time being idle in your own home? For a whole day? Life moves fast, and aside from the already consuming five-days-a-week work commitment for the most of us, the two days left of the week are crammed with errands, hometowns to visit, children, making time for our loved ones, and even taking vacations that can be exhausting by themselves. Take myself as an example. I can't even remember the last time I read a magazine! Magazines are such an indulgence for me these days. I have magazines dating from 2014 that I have not had time to even read until today. And here I was, flipping through the pages, not thinking about that meeting I have on Monday or any of my other worldly problems. Those things can take a back seat today.
Having a one-day staycation is a great way to unwind. You’ve got nowhere to be, no emails and social media to consume you, there is no travel time, you get to enjoy being in your home that you’ve worked hard to decorate and make comfortable, you can indulge in food you like, and most importantly you get to feel like your time is your own again. And this last bit is especially important. You will always think that there isn’t time, and that there is something to do or somewhere to be. But if you think back of a past year and can’t recall a time when you’re enjoying your own company in your own home, then your staycation is overdue.
Tips on having a great staycation:
1. Don't set goals for the day. You'll end up chasing it or you'll end up feeling slightly disappointed if it doesn't materialize. This is the time to just sit back and float around.
2. Stay away from social media. That is just a black hole that will suck you in for hours.
3. If you have kids, be realistic. I know a friend who does a half-day staycation due to babysitting time limitations. And it works fine for her.
4. Do what you want on your staycation. If it means trying out all your clothes in the closet, so be it. You don't want to put on pants? Good for you.
5. BE PRESENT. Don't think about your neverending life problems or the bills you forgot to pay or how to make more money. Next time.