Staying home is easy, it’s familiar, it’s what you know. Your bed, your pillow, your neighborhood, your friends. Go ahead and build that nest around you. It’s the support and foundation you need to push yourself to new heights.
Travel is also important. It gets you out of your comfort zone. You meet new people, learn about new cultures, taste new cuisines. You see life from a different perspective, and hopefully it changes your own perspective as a result.
But like many things in the digital age, travel also creates a mindfulness dilemma. Everybody’s carrying a device in their pocket that has the ability to take pictures and immediately share them with the world. Instead of telling your friends about your trip when you get home, you can tell them in real-time.
It’s truly groundbreaking, but it’s also a burden. Constantly connecting to the digital world when you could be exploring the real world is like lugging around an extra heavy suitcase.
Every time you pause to post a status update about your experience, you’re stopping that experience in its tracks. When you’re physically in an exciting new locale — relaxing on a tropical beach, exploring a beautiful city, spending quality time with family and friends — why would you want to mentally be somewhere else?
Mindfulness isn’t something you only practice at home or at work, it’s a way of being. Travel is perhaps the most important place to find mindfulness.
I’m not saying you should never post an update from your vacation. In fact, post as much and as freely as you want. Just avoid social media when it takes away from the experience itself.
I choose to travel light. I’ll make a conscious effort to stay in the moment. Sure, I’ll post a Facebook/Twitter/Instagram update from time to time, that’s the age we live in, but never at the expense of my experience.
If you really want to relax when you travel, then be there… live, in person, wherever you are with whomever you’re with. Explore your new surroundings with all your heart. Soak up every moment. Make it count. You can always log on and share the moment with your friends later.
Originally published at www.getmindfulnow.com.