Hopes are high that the summer of 2022 will bring back some long awaited holiday freedom, and that we will travel better than ever before. But our post-pandemic excitement to escape everyday life might also be tinged with the feeling of being stuck in a comfort zone of fears, uncertainties and anxieties – according to a recent OnePoll survey by SLH, which also revealed that travel is one of the top-ranking things to help us step out of our comfort zones.
Whether it’s visiting an entirely new destination, exploring a familiar favourite in a different way, trying an activity or cuisine you have never done or had before, or taking a solo trip to interact with new people in a foreign language, transcending your comfort zone can transform your travel experience and take you on a journey of self-development.
As a starting point on this journey, SLH has partnered with Roxie Nafousi, an emotional health advisor, self-development coach, and author of the best-selling book Manifest, to create a complimentary comfort zone meditation to help SLH guests find their best holiday headspace. The journey will continue with a series of Manifest Masterclasses led by Roxie at select SLH properties around the world, starting at Nobu Hotel Ibiza Bay next month. Here, she talks travel vision boards, turning holiday envy into inspiration, and how to make lasting change long after your holiday has ended.
When people are looking at things that they want to manifest into their lives, they often think about their perfect partner, dream home, or a rewarding job, but really manifestation is about living our best lives, and having an amazing experience of life – and travel is such a huge part of this. There is so much focus on our careers, in terms of the things we are working towards and having safety and stability, but also so that we can go and explore the world.
And let’s be honest…what is better than going on holiday? Travel can be a really nice addition to someone’s vision board – for me personally, I always have a few destinations on my vision board at the beginning of each year that I want to visit, because if I am manifesting that I want to go to this new place, I am also manifesting that I have the abundance to allow myself to do this. If someone wants to manifest more adventure into their life, for example, they might focus on manifesting a career which enables them to travel, and gives them the freedom to travel – rather than just focusing on the holiday itself.
Think about where you want to go, and how you want to feel within that holiday – manifestation is all about that feeling. Gratitude and mindfulness are also big parts of the manifestation journey, so when you are living and breathing this self-development practice of manifestation, you are so much more likely to enjoy yourself on holiday if you are present, appreciating and embracing your surroundings, and you can sit and just think to yourself, “Wow, I feel so fortunate to be here”.
Travel does this amazing thing for us, not only does it give us a sense of adventure, but every holiday you go on is an opportunity to grow as a person, to change, to heal something, to take a step back from your life, and really re-evaluate things. Travel is an integral part of our journey through life.
There are so many incredible benefits to meditation, from a physiological point of view and a mental health perspective. For me, it really just gives me this consistent space to press pause on the stresses of everyday life, the mental space to evaluate, to problem solve, to allow creativity to come into play, and to be able to feel inspired and present.
You can use meditation in so many different ways, from a visualisation meditation to help immerse yourself in the feelings of the things you want to have, to a reflective meditation which looks back on something in your childhood to give your younger self compassion – this kind of inner-child work can be amazing for healing and self-love – or a full body scan to reduce stress, the options and benefits are just endless.
I think the meditation I have created for SLH acts as a nice preview for what guests can expect from my masterclasses, but I also think that it’s important for guests to understand why we have done a meditation about stepping outside of your comfort zone. A big part of manifestation and evolving as a person is about stepping out of your comfort zone, because you won’t be able to make change unless you create the change in yourself first. I was really excited to create this meditation for SLH as I have not done a comfort zone-specific meditation before, so this is something new for me and hopefully a gift for guests to take away with them long after their holiday has ended.
With anything in life, understanding where we can push ourselves, look beyond our boundaries, and expand our horizons, is a really integral part of growth, which is what I hope SLH guests will experience while listening to the meditation.
From Instagram feeds to The Sunday Times bestseller list, Manifest: 7 Steps To Living Your Best Life by Roxie Nafousi is the perfect holiday read. Photographed by Carlie Tasker at Finca Serena, Mallorca.
In terms of my masterclasses, I always try to make manifestation and wellness incredibly accessible and easily digestible for everyone, including those who have not yet dipped their toe into the world of self-development – to really help people take away practical tools that they can incorporate into their daily lives. I have no doubt that every single person that attends my masterclasses with SLH will walk away feeling inspired and ready to make lasting change.
I have been going to Ibiza every year since I was 17 years old, and there is just no feeling like Ibiza. It’s the only place I have consistently visited throughout my adult life, and I can’t miss a year there, because as soon as I get off the plane I feel very at home. When you’ve been going somewhere for so many years, you really see your own evolution through that place. The way that I have experienced Ibiza has evolved and changed so much over the years, from my early to mid-twenties when I was living a very hedonistic lifestyle, to when I went last year which was the first time that I had gone as a new version of myself, without any addiction, and feeling really grounded in myself.
I didn’t party hard or drink alcohol, I just explored the little beautiful beaches, soaked up the glorious sunshine, went for a Tarot reading, and just had the most incredible time by experiencing this special island in a new way as a grown-up who lives and breathes the practice of manifestation. Ibiza has a magical, mystical power about it, which is why I am particularly excited to be hosting my first SLH masterclass at Nobu Hotel Ibiza Bay during the summer solstice – a celestial event which is said to represent the transition from action to nourishment – so the timing just couldn’t be more perfect.
When you see someone on holiday and you get that trigger of envy, immediately you have to consciously pause, and just recognise that you are feeling ready to break the routine and get away. Also think to yourself, “Is this somewhere I want to put on my vision board?” If yes, then do that and start planning – it’s so easy to complain about everyone being on holiday, but then not doing anything about it. It’s so much more powerful to acknowledge when you are feeling envious, then booking somewhere for yourself, even if it’s six months down the line, just knowing that you are giving yourself something to look forward to is such a great way to turn envy into inspiration.
I have been that person in the past who waits for something last minute to come up, but actually I’ve realised as I’ve got older that booking in advance is better (not that spontaneous trips aren’t wonderful too). I also think that sometimes we wait for somebody to travel with – I’ve just got back from a solo holiday and absolutely loved it, so for someone that sees couples or groups of friends on holiday and isn’t in the same boat relationship or friendship wise, really try to open your mind up to the idea that you absolutely can travel on your own, and take that step outside of your comfort zone.
The top destination on my vision board for this year is the Maldives – I went a decade ago, but it’s always somewhere that I feel envious of whenever I see people travelling there. So instead of letting envy get the better of me, I put it on my vision board, and will be hosting another SLH masterclass there later this year – stay tuned!
One of the first steps is to understand when you are making excuses, and recognising that excuses are a form of self-sabotage. For example, when you are thinking about going on holiday but feel that you can’t because you don’t have anyone to go with, you’re hesitant about taking time off work, just feel too busy, or feel worried that you can’t afford it, try to sort through which of these reasons are actually true, and which are excuses.
Identify what it is exactly that you are feeling apprehensive about and be honest with yourself, then get rid of those excuses and remind yourself that you do deserve to go away and are worthy of enjoying yourself – travel is such an important part of life and we are so blessed to be able to experience new landscapes, delve into new cultures, and meet new people along the way. It is a conscious decision to recognise that you need to do something different in order to create change in your life.
I just got back from a solo trip to Mykonos, which ended up being one of the best holidays of my life in terms of how healing it was, and how much I was able to reset. I was actually going to cancel the trip just beforehand and work from home as I was feeling a bit nervous about travelling by myself, but everyone there was so friendly and welcoming – I have actually never spoken to so many people in my life! There was a wonderfully sociable feeling of post-pandemic excitement to travel, and everyone just felt happy to be there.
Absolutely! There is something about being on a plane and travelling to a new place, or coming home from somewhere you’ve felt inspired and had a new experience of life, that I think really makes you reflect on different things. I’ve always had this feeling when I am on a plane home that I am starting a new chapter in my book, my own life story.
I really want to travel more outside of Europe – I think Europe has become my comfort zone in a way, and I have felt a bit of trepidation about going too far away from home, especially now that I have my son. But the thought of going somewhere far flung like South America really excites me, and doing something a bit more experiential and challenging, like a mountain climb!