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Summer comes. We’re busy. We don’t get to travel as much as we’d like. Those romantic weekends keep getting pushed.
Halloween pops its head up, and then all of a sudden we’re bombarded by the stress of the holiday season. Finding affordable tickets to make it home to both your families for Thanksgiving. Trying to figure out what to buy your Dad for Christmas because his sweater collection has been growing annually for the last 6 years thanks to you. And then what to buy your significant other? How much money are you supposed to spend? Is it thoughtful enough? Is it too expensive? Not expensive enough?
White elephant parties. Multiple office holiday parties. The line at the airport during December travel. Delays. Cancellations.
For as much time that we spend together during the holiday season, it’s almost like we don’t get to spend any time together at all. Forget date night in December, it’s been replaced with last minute gift scrambling.
By the end of the holiday season we’re so ready for a break, it always feels like we’re starting the new year fatigued, not refreshed.
In our culture we only think of romantic vacations in tropic climate destinations, but can you imagine a more romantic, re-centering both for your relationship and mentally as spending a few days over New Year's alone together in a mountain cabin by a frozen lake?
The perfect opportunity to defog from the stress of the gift-giving season and reboot; clearing away 2015 and starting fresh for all the opportunities that 2016 will bring. Not a roaring celebration of the clock passing midnight, but a calm, reinvigorating couple of days in nature with the love of your life. It’s soothing just imagining it.
But don’t worry, planning Operation Romantic Recharge doesn’t have to be just one more thing to plan this season. Take 20 minutes on sites like VRBO or AirBNB, find a spot you can drive to and book it. As soon as the holiday noise has settled, pack your weekender with simple, warm essentials like this rugged, functional, and handsome look.
Returning to nature in winter is an experience unlike any other time of year. The crisp fresh air is reenergizing. The extra effort it takes to walk on a snowy trail brings new focus to the everyday steps we've grown unaware of. Preparing wood for a fire requires new attention to a necessity we take for granted with finely tuned central heat in every building we walk into. These fundamentals for a few days in the outdoors are the perfect activities to quiet a mind that has been running a million times per minute for months. Similar to focusing on your breath during meditation, by allowing your mind to center on the requirements of winter in the outdoors, the clutter will fall away. A clean slate for your relationship and the opportunities of 2016.
Make this trip rich and helpful
Sure, even if you just treat this as any vacation it’ll help you decompress. But instead, why not make it an intentional strengthening of your own goals as well as the relationship between the two of you?
Over a bottle of wine, after a beautiful day in nature, cuddle up and ask each other introspective questions like:
- What was your favorite moment with me in 2015?
- What were the top 3 highlights of the year?
- What disagreement or negative situation are we now grateful for resolving that made our relationship stronger and our love more intense?
- Every moment, day, and year is an opportunity to learn from successes and failures. What lesson did you learn in 2015 that you can carry into opportunity in 2016?
- What are 3 ways we can each support one another better in 2016?
- List 3 goals for 2016. This can be work, recreation, relationship, anything. And regardless of whether those get accomplished what is the theme of 2016 going to be? It could be “reconnecting,” “advancing,” “passion,” “strength,” “healing,” or “expanding”.
As terrible as I make the season sound, it really is my favorite time of year, even with the added stress. This year, don't just fall asleep on the couch on New Year's Eve, plan something special. Something simple the two of you will remember forever and will carry you recharged and excited into 2016.