Core Elements to an Ideal HSY Vacation

What makes an ideal vacation for sensitive youth? Sure, it’s important to weave in some family rituals. But maybe the best vacation is about no pressure.

Freedom + Time = Ingenuity 

This photo, Winter 1978: Alane and Skoshi, speaks to me of ideal vacation time in my youth. After enough rest and enough free time, ingenuity takes over the highly sensitive brain–especially the highly sensitive youth’s brain.

I created a harness for my sled on a rare snowy day. While we had a pony cart and harness, it was in no way designed to pull a regular sled. And Skoshi was thinking, “What the heck is this thing sliding behind me?”

But, with patience and ingenuity (and maybe a little inspiration from the song, Jingle Bells) my brain created a day long project. Creating the “sleigh”, finding harness hacks, training the pony, and driving around the farm. It was so dangerous–what if a down slope caused my sled to slide up under Skoshi’s hooves? 

As a highly sensitive youth, I was always thinking about and noticing the subtleties. I was ready to create drag with my feet or bale off in an emergency. I was cautious about our speed while pushing the envelope just enough for my high sensation seeking self to feel the thrill. This reminds me of my highly sensitive son trying to figure out how to base jump or “fly” as a tween. He tried some edgy things, but always with lots of careful processing.

Does it mean we never got injured? Not a bit. But our highly sensitive risk-taking was thoughtful and careful. 

Sensitive youth need to hole up in their cave and rest up from the pressure of the past months. But – and this is a big BUT – No resting will come from engaging on devices.  

HSY, maybe you could ask someone to help you create a healthy budget for engaging with the world on your devices. I know I usually can’t break my addiction solo!

Remember the 3 core elements of ideal vacation recovery

1. Time for your eyes to be closed whether awake or asleep (rest)

2. Time to move your body and have fun doing so (exercise, dance, hikes, your sport, a new martial arts or trapeze class.)

3.Time to be creative (art, cooking, service, social, spirituality, etc)

These are the core elements for an ideal vacation for HSY. Once you get these on board, you will be ready and able to make healthy choices about what else you want to add onto your vacation.

Maybe it’s training your pony, dates with friends and family, or extravagant traveling, your brain won’t thank you for the addition of big activities without first doing repair from the daily pressures of life as a highly sensitive youth. 

Once you can exhale with the pressure off, then your ingenuity will bloom. 

What about those parents of yours? What about your friends? I know they want so many things to happen. They think their plans are so fun and so great for you–and they likely are. 

And yet, there will need to be some negotiation. Help your parents and friends understand your need to decompress. Everyone needs it, but for you it is non-negotiable. 

If you have just been going along with busy school breaks your entire life, this might come as a shock to your friends and family. Your life as a teen or young adult is different from your life as a child.

The pressures are much greater. You push yourself harder to participate in school, social, and community activities.

You are TOTALLY capable… and yet it wears you out.

I call this stepping back you have to do MENTAL HEALTH DAYS. But you can call it whatever you like. ME DAYS, maybe. 

Wondering if you are highly sensitive?

Listen to a short talk on it.