11 Ways to Enhance Experiences

As you might know, I've spent the last year on a working holiday in New Zealand (hence the lack of posts and load of instagrams 😁) . For 8 months of that, I've had the pleasure of living and working in the 8th Wonder of the World, Milford Sound.

This has hands down been one of the most amazing experiences I've gotten to enjoy; being immersed daily in this stunning place with amazing people and countless new experiences and adventures. I honestly couldn't have asked for more from it (not even better functioning internet or mobile signal!)

As with any new experience, particularly for the sensitive souls like myself, it has definitely come with new learnings, the occasional challenge and some acclimatising, but ultimately these all just came together to give a wealth of thorough enjoyment.

New environments and new experiences can bring different things depending on our mindset, perspective and attitude at the time. If we're showing up to these for example with a self we don't really care for, the outcome will be different to showing up with solid self esteem and self love. Likewise, there's a number of different ways to ensure we get the most out of these experiences and keep ourselves free and present in the process.

Here's what I've learned along the way to enhance experiences:

1. Choose Compassion 

Opt for compassion as often as possible for yourself and for others. When we lose compassion we find ourselves in judgement, resentment and irritation. Let yourself be tired, let others be annoying and let yourself choose compassion towards these things.

When we get too bothered by things we can't control we lose our capacity to indulge fully in experiences. We get caught up in the noise of stuff that doesn't really matter. Find compassion to be patient with yourself as you begin new things, find compassion to allow yourself adjust and choose compassion whenever judgement or expectations wish to raise their voice.

2. Keep the playing field even

Remember that you deserve and have a place anywhere as much as anyone else does.

'Stop walking through the world looking for confirmation that you don’t belong. You will always find it because you’ve made that your mission.. True belonging and self-worth are not goods; we don’t negotiate their value with the world.. No one belongs here more than you.' Brené Brown

Sometimes in new places around new people we get the measuring stick out and start comparing or putting others up on pedestals which in turn means putting ourselves down. This is a fantastic way to ruin an experience. Keep the playing field even and stand your own sacred ground as part of the team.

3. Be a part of it, all of it

Immerse yourself in moments, feel them in your bones, be truly present. Engage your senses and really feel everything you experience. Learn to become mindful of what's going on around and within you. Stay awake and aware and you'll begin to garner the benefits of each magic moment you get to be a part of.

This enhances the memories you'll take away with you too as you've become part of them; your image of the experience will be clear and whole and all yours. Everyday in Milford I was wowed by my surroundings, I loved taking every sight and sound and sensory experience in. It kept it fresh, real, enjoyable and breathtakingly beautiful.

4. Take Note

Oddly for me I took heaps of photos and wrote very little about the experience - I guess that goes hand in hand with being a part of it, not wanting to disappear away to write my diary - but still, whatever form it takes, take conscious note of your experiences. 

These will serve as incredible memories in the future and it's so lovely to look back and recall the adventures. Even during the day, make a mindful note of where you are, what you're up to and how it feels. It's easy to get carried away or try to tick the boxes but do try to give every moment its time to be yours, give each noteworthy experience its opportunity to be noted.

5. Go For It

Decide what you want to do and just do it - what are you waiting for? Time moves whether we choose to move with it or not so we've got to take responsibility for making things happen. 

When we realised our end date was fast approaching we finally made a list of things we still wanted to do before we left and started getting out there and doing them. But it's definitely something that could have been started sooner! 

We don't know what could happen, we don't know how long we'll have all the resources we need - we need to just get out there and go for it. Ask if others want to do it too, put yourself out there, seek out what you need - make it happen. Our experiences can only be as big and as full as we make them.

6. Forgiveness

Forgive yourself and forgive others. When things don't go as we planned or as we would've liked them to, ensure to exercise forgiveness. Don't waste time getting down on yourself, feeling bad or engaging in any negativity really. That's not what you're here for.

Let go of the little niggles and keep moving forward, remembering compassion along the way. Embrace the shaky steps that come with beginning something new and gift yourself with a patient, forgiving attitude.

7. Travel Light

Abide by emotional and mental baggage allowances along your journey. Whatever doesn't fit comfortably in your mind has to go. There's neither the space nor energy to weigh yourself down when you're on an adventure. Learn the liberating practice of letting go and do it regularly. 

8. Be Yourself

Don't give this experience to someone you're not, this is for you - take ownership of it. You cannot enjoy it fully if you're trying to be someone else, it's just not possible. That's all I can say about this one really, just be authentic, true to yourself and give yourself the chance to enjoy it entirely. And in turn, this gives others the privilege of meeting who you really are.

9. Don't give insecurity a boarding pass

Insecurity is a powerful and insidious affliction. It has no place in any experience that you'd actually like to enjoy. Anytime you notice it rearing its head, you owe it to the experience to overcome it. 

Respond to whatever it says with a strong, solid affirmation of self worth. Don't give in to it, entertain it or believe a word of it. It does not have the required paperwork to be with you on this adventure, leave it behind and immerse yourself in self loving statements instead.

10. Respect your boundaries 

Don't forget in all the excitement that you're still a human being with needs and feelings and limits. Respect what you need, when you need it. 'Burnout' is not exactly a classic experience enhancer! Take what you need to keep a balanced level of self care amidst the fun and shenanigans.

11. Get amongst it

One of the team's stock phrases was 'Get amongst it!' and that's probably one of the most important things. Get right amongst it, get deep in the experience, let go and just jump right in. Sing, dance, laugh and throw yourself out of your comfort zone. You'll only get to do this exact experience once, so make it count.

Make it memorable, make it yours and enjoy the magic.

And don't forget to be grateful along the way because I genuinely believe that an attitude of gratitude will keep these amazing experiences flowing to you!


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