Recently, we are able to get out of town for a break, and, not surprisingly, it was great to get away. Having a new to-do list, or no to-do list gets us, at least temporarily, out of our daily routines. Just packing a suitcase creates an opportunity to re-evaluate what is truly essential to our comfort; for example, to ask ourselves why we own so many socks we don’t wear.
Away from our usual surroundings, we fixate on new details and work different parts of our brains. We feel no guilt about spending hours exploring one place, knowing we may not return soon (or ever). Attempting this same contemplation at home, however, feels like an indulgence, or a waste of time, or a reckless shirking of responsibilities. This article at The Onion helped us keep in mind the futility of obsessing over responsibilities when we ought to be having fun. Travelling puts the focus on just being. Not being productive, or responsible, or better, but just being and using our senses to take in our new surroundings.
It’s not always possible to get out of town though, so how do we interrupt our usual mental programming from time to time now that we’re back home? How do we, at least some of the time, gain a fresh perspective on our lives and our work? We don’t all have option of Sagmeister sabbaticals, so is there another way to induce that “away” state of mind? Is there a way to see our hometown through a traveller’s eyes? We’re not sure yet, but we have some ideas to try out and we’ll let you know…