Everyone looks forward to getting away, whether it be to a beach, a historic city, or a quiet bed and breakfast. Couples dream of finally spending quality down time together away from the daily grind of work, bills and kids. One thought to consider that usually does not make the to-do-list, is how to transition from only seeing each other in the morning for a quick cup of coffee and then not again until the evening, to now having 24/7 full on togetherness. This coveted week alone can be both exciting and a bit daunting. It is completely normal to have an adjustment period when you first unpack thinking about a full day's worth of being joined at the hip. Once you have pushed your chair away from the breakfast table what's next on the agenda?
• Start strategizing as soon as the vacation is booked. Individually take the time to learn about your destination so when you arrive you're ready to hit the ground running. Compile lists of the must-see sights, best restaurants and local streets for wandering, people watching and shopping. The goal is to avoid the scenario where you stare at each other on day one with an exchange of "what do we do?" looks.
• Take your research to the next level by making at least a loose action plan. Map out a flexible schedule of activities that you enjoy jointly as well as what you like to do on your own. This will allow for a day that features both time together along with solo outings, insuring greater harmony when you reconnect. Book plans in advance, whether it be a walking tour through a city or a massage appointment at a resort, time slots are coveted so get the upper hand and there will be no disappointments.
• Be realistic about what you like and don't like to do. By this I mean avoid doing activities that are just too far out of your comfort zone. Even years down the pike we all want to be as accommodating as possible in order to insure that the vacation goes smoothly. Don't be the one who is signed up for parasailing when you fear heights, or fishing junkets when the open sea makes you queazy. The same goes for type A personalities who should probably not book extended aroma therapy sessions.
• When it comes to dining, know each other's preference for alone time versus getting together with the couples that you met poolside. Which combination of options will ultimately rev your batteries and fulfill your definition of a vacation? Are you in agreement with the idea of a reservation for four to six people rather than a candle lit dinner for two?
• Don't listen to your friends' hype over their recent trips. People love to carry on about how over the top and incredible their vacations were. There is no need to compare your adventure to anyone else's. Your vacation should be tailored to what suits you best. Whether it is R&R on a beach or exploring far away cities, there is no set standard or mold for the perfect get away.
The anticipation of finally being together and away from it all, has a lot to live up to. Expectations are often set too high and that can lead to feelings of disappointment. It is important to know your ideal pace so that you don't feel the need to constantly be on the move when away or end up too stationary. Enjoy every moment of your one on one time, but know it's okay to spend a few hours apart and explore on your own. Some space during the course of a day is a good thing. Not every minute has to be an affirmation of your love involving holding hands and whispering sweet nothings in each other's ear. News flash......no one actually stays in their hotel room days on end ordering from the night stand menu. Even honeymooners need a break!!