#TravelTuesday You’d Be a Lot Happier If You’d Just Plan a Vacation

When my aunt invited me to go with her and my cousin to New York at the end of January – I instantly accepted the invitation. Didn’t matter where they wanted to go, really. It had been a challenging year and I was ready to say “yes” to any and all kinds of travel. In addition, the opportunity to travel with people I love is quite rare.

My brothers and I then decided that my mother should go on this Girls’ Weekend as well. She wasn’t initially invited because she would never say yes to such a spontaneous suggestion. You know the type…

“Take off work? During the week? While we are remodeling the house? I couldn’t.”

So my brothers and I took a chance. We bought her a nonrefundable ticket for Christmas and insisted she do whatever necessary to make the trip and not break our little hearts. (Sometimes you have to tug on heartstrings for their own good.)

You should see the Christmas video when she opened the present – it was pretty funny.

I can’t take off work.

Yes you can, Mom.

Is Dad going to go? I want to go with Dad.

It’s a Girls’ Weekend, Mom. Dad is not invited. Sorry Dad.

You see, it is very much my personality to throw all caution to the wind and be spontaneous and buy a plane ticket without having everything all figured out… It’s actually quite exciting to me.

But that is not my mom. She plans and plans. And reschedules if someone she loves can’t make it. And definitely doesn’t go state-hopping during the school year for no good reason. Well… she didn’t used to.

Now that she has gotten over the shock of doing something out of character, she is excited. As am I. As are we all. Just chatting about the upcoming experience is good fellowship.

We are anticipating the fun that we are going to have and the memories that we are going to make. We know there will be many laughs and a few frustrations, but that we will all come out ahead buy the time it’s all said and done. We are using our minds to “think of things that are lovely”.

I like to think of anticipation as worry, backwards. It’s good stuff.

To supplement my anecdote about my mom and how just planning a trip can be a joy, I did a little online digging and… wouldn’t you know- I’m right. The essence of various articles report that happiness spikes as we plan our travels- in contrast to our day-to-day lives. However, happiness does not spike again because the trip had been taken. Interesting, huh? Check out the conversation about this on my Facebook page.

Ahh… Don’t you just love it when you find reputable studies and/or articles that support what you already believe to be true about something? I sure do.

So I was right! I rest my case! …with myself, since I’m not sure anyone was arguing.

In any case, I want to always be planning a trip, my next adventure… my next experience. Even if it’s 2 years away. And so I have made the first steps toward the top of my bucket list with my African Safari Pinterest board… Eek!

Follow Jen Knoedl’s board African Safari on Pinterest.

How about you? What can you start planning for today? Let me know in the comments below.

PS: Do something today toward your goal. Failing to plan travel too often results in regrets.

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