I feel like I am a different person when I travel. I don’t feel rushed even though I could have every reason to be. I’m friendlier and more excited about trying new restaurants. I chat up more people, ask for more recommendations, and find more hidden gems than I do in Nashville. Nashville Kim always seems to be trying to cram everything into the day, whereas Travel Kim is excited when I can fit a few more little pleasures in that I didn’t expect.
I think there are a few reasons for these two different Kims. In Nashville, I’m worried about asking questions and seeming like a tourist because I’m supposed to be a local and I don’t want people to know I have no clue what I’m doing. Instead, that’s exactly what ends up being so endearing and makes it easy to talk to people in new places – I’m so excited to learn more about how they see their home and how I can enjoy it. Now, why wouldn’t I want to do that in Nashville?
I also end up having really high expectations for what I should accomplish every day when I’m in Nashville. I put way too many things on my to-do list each day, more than would be reasonable, and then I feel defeated when I don’t accomplish those tasks. Travel Kim has maybe one or two big goals for the day, and by keeping it simple, it’s amazing what I can stumble into each day.
Ultimately, I would love to bring a little bit of Travel Kim back to Nashville instead of leaving her at the airport. There are probably a few ways I can do this. First would be to talk to people more – ask them questions, ask them about their favorite restaurant or bar or hike. Another thing that goes along with this is not being afraid to be a tourist in my own city, and seeking out fun and unique things to do each week. I did this way back in 2014 and it made me fall in love with Nashville in the first place – so why not bring it back? Finally, lowering expectations could really help. I tend to make long, long to-do lists, and instead I’ve been experimenting lately with only putting 3 things on my to-do list each day – I’ve been so much more successful with that. I think I could simplify even more and make just one priority per day, and schedule it into the day like I do when I travel. For example, it took me at least 2 weeks to get a shirt and skirt to the dry cleaner, because I kept pushing it to the end of the list. At the beginning of each week, I’m going to try to make a list of the 5-6 things I accomplish each week, and I will assign a day and time to each of them. If I have energy to cross the next day’s task off as well, that’s a bonus, but it’s enough just to accomplish one thing per day. My non-negotiables – work, sleep, exercise, and Charm – are enough to think about each day without adding too much else extra.
This week, here are the three things I want to accomplish:
- Contact Moen about getting a new faucet (#adulting)
- Buy a present for a friend with a big life change coming up
- Write and send two thank you notes I’m behind on
Yes, I’m setting the bar low, because these are really important to me. Luckily I can put one on Tuesday, one on Wednesday, and one on Thursday, and add that to my HVAC tune-up on Friday for a full week.
I’ll follow up in a week so we can see how I did!