We are back and refreshed after a long weekend with old friends! It wasn’t all fun and games–wait, YES IT WAS! Still, we did manage to learn a few things while we were having fun. Here are the five lessons we took away from our time away:
Stepping away from your daily routine gives you a fresh perspective. Who knew that there was life beyond Thomas the Tank Engine and our weekday pattern of park, library, park, library…? Taking time off from your daily routine can accomplish two things. It can help you break out of a rut to change those habits that maybe aren’t working so well, and it can also encourage you to appreciate your blessings. One part of the weekend that stands out in my mind was driving through a part of the state that I had never visited, despite growing up here. With the wind whipping through our hair as we sang along with our summer playlist, I felt like a tourist on a beach vacation.
Stay fluid and go with the flow. Sure, it sounds cliché, but we learned to be open to making a last-minute decision, which is extremely tough for us Virgos! Otherwise, you might miss an opportunity that you wouldn’t have found otherwise. After a 3 1/2 hour scavenger hunt and then a post-party, we were ready to pick up a pizza and hunker down at our home base, where comfortable couches and plenty of wine awaited us. Instead, we opted to check out a local saloon for a drink and some live music. It turned out to be a great decision, because the band was smokin’, the food and drinks were delicious, and we hung out with new people.
Get out of your comfort zone and be willing to learn something new. This approach came in handy during the aforementioned scavenger hunt. My comfort zone normally does not involve wearing a tiara and making up country and western songs for strangers. But we had to complete certain challenges and activities in order to receive our next clues. Our time was limited, so we did a lot of thinking on our feet. The best part was demonstrating our vast knowledge of our home city (with a little help from Google).
Recognize all that you do (especially for others) and acknowledge your own accomplishments. Many of us are in thankless positions that don’t get a lot of external validation or praise. It could be a work-related milestone (particularly if you are self-employed!) or simply a job well-done raising your family–whatever you’ve accomplished, it means a lot to receive recognition. We celebrated each other’s achievements, things that otherwise might have been overlooked.
Spontaneity is crucial; but a little planning ahead can save time and money. We really embraced the “go with the flow” mentality mentioned in lesson one, perhaps a little too much at times. Had we planned ahead, we might not have ended up with three hair dryers, three flat irons, and no coconut rum. And hypothetically speaking, if three girls were to, say, plan to start their weekend together by shopping for provisions, better coordination between them might prevent two of the three from going to a different grocery store. And the third might not spend fifteen minutes walking around trying to find the other two (“I’m in produce. Are you still in dairy?”) before realizing they were at the wrong store. Not saying that happened to us….
In everyone’s life, at some time, our inner fire goes out. It is then burst into flame by an encounter with another human being. We should all be thankful for those people who rekindle the inner spirit. — Albert Schweitzer
This is still my favorite of the five quotes about friendship in last week’s Five on Friday post. Being around friends who knew me way back when and who still laugh at my goofiness has gotten that inner flame burning again.
In other words, long live Girls’ Weekend!