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Staying Present While On Vacay

CALPAK Vanity Case in Midnight Marble.

On my recent trip to New York, I was thinking about what kind of baggage to bring. I’m not talking about literal baggage like a suitcase, I’m talking about the countless amount of work-related projects I had, ideas that have been floating around in my mind, unresolved responsibilities every adult has to prioritize and overall, a potpourri of THOUGHTS. While booking this trip a couple months ago, I promised myself that this would be my “break” from it all, a time to reflect on my goals and just own a sense of self while being present with my friends. And that’s what happened. I documented my trip less than I normally would and also felt compelled to share why this trip was so special to me: I WAS FULLY PRESENT. In doing this, I was deeply relaxed, refreshed and READY for anything once I landed back in LA. I didn’t post most of the videos and photos below on my social media accounts but looking back at them now, I’m glad I saved them for this instead.

What I brought:

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What I brought with me:

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Here are a few tips I gathered on how to balance documenting an experience while staying present:


Start your trip by TURNING ON vacation mode. Do this the very moment you turn on your out of office email, get on the airplane, get to your destination — as soon as possible. Your physical, mental, emotional and spiritual self has to be with you throughout your trip, so don’t wait until you’re out sipping cocktails or jumping from activity to activity. Un-distract yourself ahead of time and THEN you’ll officially be ready for the time of your life.

Tamà Restaurant, Boys Don't Cry Bar


Whether you’re traveling with your significant other or with a group of people, be surrounded by people who have the same goal as you on vacation — SOAKING IT ALL IN. One of the ways you can hold each other accountable is by making meals together a “cell phone free zone” and whoever goes against the rules, has to pay the bill. Take full advantage of catching up, getting to know each other even more and most importantly, making new memories together.

Adventuring around New York City: Moma, PS1, Brother Vellies.


Do you have FOMO? It won’t do you any good to watch OTHER people’s lives while you’re out here living your best life on vacay, which is probably somewhere you saved your hard earned dollars for but are unknowingly taking it for granted by scrolling through the ‘Gram every chance you get. Replace your “fear of missing out” with the reminder that you’re exactly where you’re supposed to be at that moment and the only thing you’d be missing out on would be the memories you could be making instead.

On another note, ever since Kim Kardashian’s Paris robbery occurred, she stated on Business of Fashion’s Podcast, Drive, that she usually posts her Instagram stories later in the day when she’s no longer there or sometimes even days later. She says that now, she doesn’t want anyone to know exactly where she is at that exact moment for protection and privacy purposes. Not that I’m Kim Kardashian or even have a type of following on social media where people care too much where I am, but that did make me think why I ever felt the need to post right AT THAT VERY MOMENT. Sure, you’re “in the moment” by posting about the moment but what I’ve been practicing lately is minimally documenting, saving the Insta-story, THEN posting them later during downtime. You’ll probably be able to design an even more compelling story with more thoughtful captions and cute gifs by taking your time and posting later — or just keeping those memories to yourself and those you shared it with.

The Metropolitan Museum of Art.


As you’re on your trip, remind yourself to acknowledge why you’re there and why you DESERVE the time away. Take it as a gift to yourself for getting through the hustle and bustle of your everyday life. Perhaps you’re away to celebrate something special or perhaps you’re away because you needed a break (like me) — whatever the reason, cherish your time off. It’s a beautiful thing to be able to reflect on how blessed you are to be in that very space, with the people around you and the memories you’re making.

"Everything is going to be alright"

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