Traveling is a Mindset #8: Keep a Day Trip Bag Ready to Go

It doesn’t need to be an enormous bag filled with stuff but it’s helpful to be a a little prepared when you want to prod yourself to be spontaneous. Sometimes the thought of pulling things together is enough to talk you out of going. Having a simple bag with some things set to go will help prevent you from using the "I don't have the time to get everything together" excuse. I keep a picnic bag in the trunk of my car along with my camera and GPS unit charged and ready to go anytime.

Be prepared to stay over night, just in case.  It adds a thrilling element to the trip, whether you can stay overnight or not. It keeps the excitement open. The idea is to have simple basic layers available and to be ready for just about any experience you may come across. Sure the items will vary depending on your interests, I happen to have a small cheese board and knife, wine glasses and a wine opener because I like being in the middle of nowhere and having the ability to indulge in a glass of wine while watching the sunset. 

In California we are blessed with AMAZING French bread. There are bakeries and different varieties of great bread everywhere. For a day trip it’s easy to grab a French bread, some olives and keep a small cooler in back and a very inexpensive way to snack. 

Here are some suggestions on things to have ready to go:
GPS Unit
First Aid Kit

Picnic Bag
Napkins/hand wipes/hand sanitizer
Bug spray
Cheese board
Wine/Bottle Opener
Granola Bars/Crackers/Nuts
Add fresh fruit and perishable foods the day of your trip and bring in a small cooler with ice

Bathing Suit
Hiking shoes
Dress shoes (in case you go out to dinner)

Random Entertainment
Deck of cards

A couple of things to note, I keep a cheese board, wine glasses and wine opener just in case we come across an awesome sunset somewhere. Of course never drink and drive and don’t drink in your car. I use this for places we’ve hiked to or will be staying at. The clothes I suggest are for a mild California climate, obviously take into account where you live and what type of weather/terrain you have. I can’t vouch for or have no knowledge of what kind of gear to have in sub zero temperatures.

The list of what to include can go on and on. What are some things you like to carry in your car for your adventures?


Traveling is a Mindset #7: Be Spontaneous

Be spontaneous, I mean really spontaneous. Okay, I know this can be very challenging for some but just hear me out. Arriving somewhere you had no set plans to be at is fun, motivating, exciting and pushes your personal limits.  

Several years ago I jumped on a last minute opportunity to head to Jamaica for a week.  At the time life was feeling a bit stagnant. On a whim one of my sisters co-workers mentioned he was spending the week in Jamaica and suggested we should try to join him.  My first reaction was no, absolutely not. I wanted to go but before I even made the effort my mind was filled with reasons why I couldn't go; I can't afford it, I don't have the time, I don't have the right bathing suit etc.

Then the adventurer in me started to think, what if?  Instead of focusing on how I couldn't make it happen I decided to start focusing on looking into ways to make it possible. As it turns out the timing happened to coincide with our yearly family vacation so my sister and I already had the week off. We did some price research online and put in a bid on Priceline for a flight we could afford. We unexpectedly secured a great deal and within 24 hours we were on our way to Jamaica.  

It was exhilarating, the rush from completely changing our plans and doing something so unexpected added some well needed excitement to my life and made me feel more alive then ever.  Sure, not everything about the trip was perfect, the hotel was a little rustic and we ran into a few mishaps but they only made the experience that much more exciting.  

I realize picking up on a moments notice and flying to Jamaica may not be possible for everyone but you can be truly spontaneous without going very far.  On your next day off take a day trip with no destination, go down every road you’ve never been down before and be an explorer.  Drive as far as you possibly can, stop at any place that catches your eye, sometimes stop at the places that don't.  Spend time brainstorming ways to make the seemingly impossible happen instead of focusing on all the excuses on why it can't.  Oh and of course, have fun!

What's the most spontaneous thing you have done, how did it make you feel?


Traveling is a Mindset #6: Be Grateful For What You Have

Daffodils are so beautiful.  I'm grateful for their beauty in bloom this time of year.
Start a gratitude journal.  Taking notice of all the wonderful things in your life opens you up to receive more abundance in your life.  Sometimes you long to be other places and as a result all of the great things around you go un-noticed.  Being grateful for what you have creates positive energy and allows you to approach life from a thankful place.  When you have a better attitude and are thankful, you are more open for new experiences.

The goal is to get yourself in the mindset of seeing the world through a travelers eyes no matter where you are.  When you are grateful for what you have, where you are now, you draw in positive energy and take notice of all the unique and amazing things around you.  Make it a goal every day to write down at least 1-3 things you are grateful for or simply take note of the best part of your day.

What are you grateful for today and/or what was the best moment of your day?


Traveling is a Mindset #5: Learn a New Skill

Learning to cook Thai food in Thailand.
Singing, painting, drawing, cooking, it doesn’t matter what you do. Having fun is one of the most important things in life and should be put at the top of your to do list. Experiencing fun just for the pure joy of it creates a happy you, a happy you makes a better world. If you find a passion while engaging in a creative activity, fabulous, but don’t make it your goal.  The goal should simply be to try something creative you have always wanted to do, just for the sheer joy of it. 

My masterpiece, cashew nut chicken.
Okay I know you’re probably thinking these suggestions are cheesy. The goal here is to get you back to basics, inspire, ignite passion and excitement. After all that is what traveling does and I want you to be able to bring this skill into your daily life.  

Sometimes we forget what we actually like to do and this is an attempt to try to jog your memory or get you over the fear of trying something new, to view the world as a traveler.  Starting with simple reminders is a way to strip away all the things that are stopping you from living a life you love.

Make a list of things that ignite your interest or you’ve always wanted to try and pick one to start this week.  If trying something new scares you or makes you nervous it’s even better. Once you try it, whether you love it or hate it, the boost of confidence you will get from being brave enough to try something new will be far more rewarding then spending your life wishing you would have tried something. 

What new activity are you going to try?