The holidays have finally rolled around and school is out. You may have planned to spend this time with your BFFs only to find that they’ve been given the chance to go on expensive holidays, financed by the bank of mum and dad. You may think you’re facing a lonely and boring summer punctuated by gleeful social media updates by your friends from whatever holiday paradise they find themselves in.
As Max Hermann’s 1927 poem, Desiderata, says, there will always be greater and lesser persons than yourself. The trick to navigating successfully through a life where some people have more and others have less than you, is to cultivate an attitude of gratitude while at the same time working towards the goals you have for yourself.
What does this have to do with missing out on an expensive holiday? Simple, learning to deal with situations when life does not go your way is a great lesson in learning how to overcome adversity, setting goals and learning to be thankful for the tangible and intangible blessings in your life. Instead of wallowing in pity and bemoaning the fact that you (sometimes) don’t get what you want, you can choose to come up with your own tailor-made alternative to an expensive holiday.
Come up with something even better
You don’t have to look far to find organised summer activities. From tennis school to enrolling in art lessons, there are plenty of options laid on if you look for them. Alternatively, make up your own. Throw a themed movie night with your friends or create an urban safari to discover more about where you live. Depending on your interests and your level of creativity, you should be able to have a great time during summer, without having to travel too far from home or even breaking the bank.
Get a job
Getting a part-time job during the summer is a great way to learn and earn at the same time. Having a structured day and a schedule that requires you to report to work during fixed hours will prep you for the time when you have to do it for real. It will also boost your CV. If you’re frugal you may find that you have a sizeable nest egg next time summer rolls around. You may even be able to take that holiday you missed out on this year.
Volunteering at an old people’s home, children’s hospital or animal shelter is a great way to give back. As bad as missing out on an expensive holiday may seem, it pales in comparison to adversities like chronic disease, neglect, poverty and other problems that some are facing. There’s plenty of research that looks into the emotional and health benefits of helping others: and they’re all overwhelmingly positive about its effects.
Set goals for yourself
Summer is a great time to channel your energies and time into a personal project that you’ve been putting off due to other commitments. For instance, if you have been planning to learn how to play an instrument, you will have more time to dedicate to learning and perfecting this craft during summer, and may even find that you have become quite a maestro by the end of the holidays.
Missing out on an expensive holiday and other adverse life situations gives you the opportunity to turn a negative into a massive positive. By staying occupied and productive, you may even find that a missed holiday turns out to be one of the best things that ever happened to you.
Use the comments section below to share your ideas for enjoying the summer when you’re unable to go on expensive holidays.