Does it ever seem like you can never quite get to those things in life you’re most excited about? Those things you’d love to do that are indefinitely “on the backburner” because you’re too busy simply trying to keep up with the many activities of everyday life?

There are of course things we each must do every day: sleeping, eating, earning a living, taking care of the kids, walking the dog, etc. But for all of us, there are other things beyond those must-dos that we want to do – long to do. Things that would bring us such deep satisfaction and joy, if only we could find the time.

That’s what a you-cation is all about. Reserving the time for those things you care about that never get done because they’re just not as high a priority as the must-dos in your life.

But I want to be clear. A you-cation is not a vacation. This is not the time for laying by the pool and catching up on your Sudoku puzzles. Rather, this is a time for you to take action on the projects (work or personal) that you’ve been wanting to get to for so long. Don’t get me wrong, vacations are important too. They leave you feeling rejuvenated and refreshed. However, a you-cation will leave you filled with a different kind of satisfaction – a contentment knowing you’ve finally made progress on the things you truly care about.

So what should you do on your you-cation? It’s all about what excites you most, and what you’ve been wanting to get to for so long. One person might plant a flower bed in their backyard. Another might go out and buy a musical instrument and receive their first lesson. Someone else might work on brainstorming a name and logo for a new business idea they have. And yet someone else might get the jumpstart they need on a book they’ve been wanting to write. What you do on your you-cation is completely unique to you.

But enough talk. Let’s get to the good stuff. Below you’ll find the steps to taking your very first you-cation. Read on!

1) Set aside some time. Your you-cation could be one day, better yet two or more consecutive days, or in an ideal world a whole week. Yes, I realize this is a big commitment and perhaps even sounds completely bonkers. But remember that it’s a commitment to something really important: you and the things you care about most. I recommend scheduling your you-cation far enough in advance to ensure you have minimal competing commitments.

2) Try your best not to schedule things during your you-cation. Be as strict as you possibly can about preserving this time. Anything that can be pushed until the following week should be. However, if something comes up, that’s ok. Just do the best you can.

3) Make a list. At least a month before your you-cation, take an hour or so and sit down to make a list of what you’d like to do during this time. Let your imagination run wild. What do you love? What do you care about? If you had a day or even a week to devote to yourself and your own interests and passions, how would you spend it? After you’ve made your list, look it over and decide how you want to spend your you-cation.

4) Enjoy! When your you-cation week arrives, dive in. Don’t think. Just do. Lose track of time. Get completely lost in what you’re doing. That’s what your you-cation is for.

I’ve scheduled my very first you-cation during the month of November and I couldn’t be more excited about it. I anticipate this to be something I will do two or three times a year to make sure I’m continuing to make time for the things I care about most.

So … are you with me, or rather, with you?

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