We all long for that city break, sun holiday or year abroad. Spending so much time wishing we were somewhere else means we miss all that our surroundings have to offer.
Travelling breaks up ‘the ordinary’ and gives us the opportunity to appreciate every little thing about a brand new place. But, is travelling the only way to see the extraordinary in the mundane? Perhaps we are too lazy to experience the best of our reality, and put it off till the weekend, the bank holiday, when we got off the plane, having arrived somewhere sunny.
“We buy things to make us happy, and we succeed. But only for a while. New things are exciting to us at first, but then we adapt to them.”
Dr. Thomas Gilovich, a psychology professor at Cornell University
We’ve all taken a wrong turn while away and stumbled across a beautiful little alley way that looks like the set of Vicky Christina Barcelona. Or how about that smell of freshly baked Parisian pastries stopping you in your tracks to take it all in. Being in a new place engages all your senses and makes you mindful in a way that The Mindfulness App would take weeks of cajoling. It is a good app though, I highly recommend it.
But just like Dr. Gilovich said, we adapt. Anybody living beside that bakery doesn’t even notice the smell anymore! You’d want to shake them and make them appreciate what’s on their doorstep – and that’s what we’re going to do for you, no matter where that is. We want you to bring that feeling of wonder back home with you, so you can see your city, town or village through the eyes of an explorer.
Do What Tourists Do
Ever checked Trip Advisor for the top tips on things to do near you? It may be places you’re bored of hearing about, but I bet you haven’t actually been to them yet. Or if you have, it was when you were 5 on a very uncomfortable family trip when all you wanted was the 99 you were promised if you were good.
See What Tourist See
Whenever you see a tourist taking a picture, look at what they are capturing. What’s caught their eye? Nothing is as refreshing as seeing the same place through fresh eyes.
Music Makes Everything Better
Earphones in – head phones on – EYES UP! The power of music is undeniable. Ever feel like Rocky with your pump it Spotify playlist? Well, here’s a playlist for your own feature film.
People have a habit of ignoring where they are when they’re in a familiar place. When abroad, you’d look at every last building, notice every person and their little quirks, soaking it all in. Try it home while listening to a back-drop of your favourite songs.
Free Salsa classes. Underground Silent Discos. Meet Ups. Hiking Groups. Language Exchanges. The list goes on and on. You are sure to discover a deeper layer to your city which you never knew existed. Push yourself to explore. There is plenty of online support to ensure you make a good choice for your city experience. Try Dublin Free Event Guide or Meet Up to find the perfect night for your stay-at-home-foreign-night-out.
Avoid Comparing Your Life
Just don’t do it. K?
To summarise, be mindful. Live and appreciate the moment you’re in. If you are interested in mindfulness, The Circular has put together a map of the most popular mindfulness centres where you can meet new people, and learn how to live in the moment.
We don’t have to while away our time wishing we were somewhere else – we can fall in love with our own normal by bringing that care-free travel feeling back home with us. Comment below where you live and why you love it!
Read more: 10 Instagram Hot Spots in Dublin