Whenever I get back from time away from home, the adjustment period is always a little rough. Even now, two weeks since coming back from Mexico, I have 120 emails gathering dust in my inbox! It’s especially tricky to re-enter reality when the trip was for leisure. The demands of regular life can make those vacation days seem far away indeed! Thankfully, there are easy and effective ways to stay in vacation mode after you return. My favorite ones don’t even cost much money! Instead, they rely on the power of our senses to keep those vacation vibes within arm’s reach, any time you real life gets too…well…real. And with summer holidays coming up, I figured now was the perfect time to share ’em!
Recreate Vacation Tastes: For each adventure I’ve been on, I can name a particular food or drink that I associate with that place. During my recent stay at an eco resort in Tulum, I loved the granola the chef served for breakfast so much that I requested the recipe. When I traveled to Tuscany with my parents three years ago, my mother and I drank Aperol spritzes like they were water. And now, even though I’m now miles from Italy and Mexico, I can still make those recipes to evoke the spirit of those delicious moments!
Maybe it’s a signature cocktail at the bar you frequented during a recent big city getaway; or perhaps it’s a particular blend of fruit juices to make the paletas a Baja street vendor sold you on a hot day. Whatever those taste memories are, figure out how to recreate them and then do it on the regular!
Master Your Scent Triggers: When I was 18, I spent a summer in Nice at a French language immersion program. I brought my shampoo from home, a bottle of Pantene. It was a brand I’d never used until that trip. Now, whenever I catch a whiff of Pantene, I’m instantly transported back to those carefree days in the French Riviera. So next time you’re headed on vacation, pick up a sunscreen or lotion you haven’t used before. Even grab freebie sample of a perfume you’ve been dying to try!
Consistently use that one product throughout the trip, training your brain to associate that particular fragrance with all the experiences you’re having. Then, when you return home, you can relive them with a single sniff! (Note: You can also hit a local pharmacy for your vacay scent the moment you land at your destination. Just be sure that what you buy is something you can replace when you get back home!)
Program Your Vacay Playlist: Many parts of Tulum didn’t have Internet signal. So if I wanted to listen to music, it had to be downloaded to my phone. So I loaded several songs onto a playlist for my morning runs along the beach, and since I’ve been back in LA, I’ve been listening to that same playlist nonstop in the car. It never fails to lift my mood!
Music can foster a powerful rush of emotion and endorphins, so make a playlist and enjoy it daily while you’re traveling: In the airport and on the plane, sitting by the pool, lying in bed at the end of a long, full day. When you get back home, that playlist will be like a postcard to yourself, a souvenir you can depend on to make your heart sing!