TBT: Finding Alone Time on an (Extended) Family Vacation

A Throwback Post!! I had a blog before this one, and I have always found great comfort and strength in journaling. The posts in this series are throwbacks to feelings, events, and lessons learned before.

7/4/16

Holidays are always filled with family, fun, and, in my case, lots of noise and activity.  I wouldn’t trade the crazy dinners where we all burst into song and dance for anything, but I know I need my quiet alone time. Being in a house with nearly 20 other people for a weekend makes alone time hard to come by, however, if I can manage it, I’m confident you can as well!!

1. Identify what makes you happy. 

If you’re going to make time for yourself away from quality time with your family on a weekend designated for family, make sure you’re optimizing your time. Don’t go for a run of you hate running. That’s not going to help you maintain inner peace in the long run. (No pun intended!)

2. Determine the best time to “disappear.”

When spending time with family, you don’t want to leave in the middle of a meal, or during an activity everyone is apart of. This will only upset your loved ones making it harder for you to make time for yourself. Early mornings before everyone wakes up, late nights after everyone has gone to sleep, or times right before or after meals – just make sure you’re back in time to eat! – may work into your family’s rhythm.

3. Communicate your needs. 

You don’t have to make an announcement to everyone saying, “I’m stepping out for a minute because this is overwhelming and I need to regain my personal chi before I blow a gasket.” While this may be true, some wouldn’t understand and would be offended. Remember to keep it short and sweet. Tell maybe one person, a parent or “elder” of the family that you’re okay, but you need to “clear your head” and that you’ll be back soon. Letting just one person with a voice in the family know where you are will give you credibility in your absence. If no one knows where you are, no one can vouch for you and your alone time quickly becomes a topic of conversation because whatever you’re doing must be scandalous. (Eye roll…)

I hope these tips help you take care of your needs so you can be fully present and enjoy quality time with your loved ones. Happy (almost) 4th!

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