As we finally come out of peak holiday season and begin to tiptoe into the autumn months, I thought now was probably a better time than any to talk about my step back from holiday spam.
Before you worry that this is going to be a rant of epic proportions about bragging snaps that get spammed across social media during the summer, I can assure it’s not.
Instead, I want to take you back to a time when social media didn’t exist, and when arriving on holiday had a mixture of nerves and excitement.
As a child, we spent much of our time in France, and like most children, I didn’t have any preconceived ideas about what it would be like, or what to expect. All I knew for certain about going on holiday, was that my parents would definitely end up arguing over a map, and I would get to sing-along to the latest Now album for as long as my Dad would let me.
Now when it comes to holidays, yes, I am an adult, but we also have a multitude of information channels that can give us ideas and inspiration. From TripAdvisor, Instagram, Pinterest to Airbnb. It’s never been easier to book a holiday and go anywhere in the world.
But with this, also comes the fact that EVERYONE else can do exactly the same.
With a surge in the global ability to travel, comes the fact that tourism also grows. And what was once a picturesque place to take a mindful moment, has now become a hive of snappers queueing to get the insta-worthy snap.
Our possibility for discovery has become limited.
With this in mind, I have taken the pledge from now on to stop posting about my holidays.
It’s not because I don’t want to share my travels with the world. I’ll happily answer any questions about where I’ve visited. But more that I want to be able to discover places for myself, and with my own eyes.
Don’t get me wrong, when it’s often come to holidays in the past I’ve organised and planned every activity so that all the time has been filled.
But I’ve quickly come to realise that this has left no room for spontaneity or exploration. I’ve simply done what’s been advised or recommended, rather than find out first-hand some destinations of my own.
The truth is, when we often organise things so minutely, we build up huge expectations or what it’s going to be like. And then when it’s not the way we planned, we feel hugely disappointed.
Some of the most exotic trips can suddenly become ‘not good enough’ because it didn’t meet all the hopes that we had put on it.
Which when you think about it, seems completely ridiculous.
I’m not saying that everyone should stop posting about their holidays and their travels, sometimes it’s great to see what other people have done. And if you can’t travel it can often be the only way to see somewhere without having to visit yourself.
What I simply want to do is embrace my holiday completely. Not post on social media so that I’m then distracted by all the notifications. Not fret about visiting the tourist locations, and not stress out that it’s not been an adventure worthy enough to feature on Lonely Planet.
For me, holidays were made to be a chance to explore, and that’s what I’m taking back.
So here’s what I’m going to do from now on;
- Try to find places that currently have minimal tourism / travelers
- Not go overboard in booking activities and researching the destination (some is still required for simple safety)
- Not post on social media while I’m on holiday
- Not post anything specific about my holiday on social media when I’m back
What are your thoughts on making travel more mindful again?
Will you be trying the same? I’d love to hear your thoughts.