There is a lot to be said about spontaneity. It allows you to take advantage of opportunities that suddenly come up, opening the door to creativity and flexibility.
That is one side of the coin. This idea doesn’t seem as attractive to those who prefer planning and organization. Although this perspective sounds less appealing, it has its charm, the charm of anticipation. When you have marked some obligations, special occasions, or holidays on the agenda, this sweet anxiety of waiting keeps you awake. Science has spoken. Those who have something to look forward to are happy people. For instance, the customer experience was different prior to credit cards and online shopping. The consumer felt more satisfied with the shopping experience when he had to visit a shop.
Studies related to consumption habits have shown that people enjoy the experience more than the objects themselves, as they enjoy the planning of a purchase more than the act of purchasing. The same occurs with vacation planning. The happiest moment of the trip was weeks before hopping on board Santorini to Naxos ferry. So, although last-minute trips may hide deals and opportunities, they seem to deprive us of a part of the fun of our holidays.
The sweet agony of beautiful moments
According to a 2010 psychology study on the connection between anticipation and happiness, published in the journal Applied Research in Quality of Life, planning a trip can make a person happier than the trip itself. Besides, the Greek saying has it that the journey is more valuable than the destination. Researchers from the Netherlands asked 1,530 people, of which 974 were already on vacation, and said they felt happy before the holidays. As per the researchers, people tend to look forward to upcoming good times. At the end of the summer, everyone remembers that beautiful, shady beach with deep blue waters and endless moments of relaxation. That’s why they check the routes of the Santorini to Paros ferry months before the actual trip. After all, Paros is famous for such amazing beaches.
Happiness is a habit you create
Happiness researchers confirm the statements about how expecting something can create positive feelings. If you are wondering if there are this types of researchers, the answer is yes. One of them is Elisabeth Dunn, professor of psychology at the British University of Columbia, who alleged that pleasure is not a passive process.
There are several ways to empower this sweet feeling of anticipation;
Search for information about the attractions or the history of the place you plan to visit. Immerse yourself in the text of a poem or a novel that refers to your destination. Watch movies or videos of your chosen destination. All these actions fill you with knowledge about the place you are visiting. It may seem that it lacks logic, but daydreaming helps create positive experiences and excitement. In addition, it helps our mind bypass any minor issues in case reality does not meet our expectations. Furthermore, according to social analysts, we get an extra dose of happiness if we consciously hinder part of our joy. So, booking the Santorini to Naxos voyage in advance allows us to build positive experiences. What’s more, the holiday spree will start before we even arrive at historical Naxos.
Anticipation softens any disappointment
Another related study published in the Journal of Experimental Psychology in 2007 found that people are happier during the vacation planning stage than on their way back. This comes as no surprise but is rather self-evident. While on vacation, city residents detach from the intense pace of everyday life. Complimentary to the findings of said study, we may enjoy the anticipation of the journey more than the memory of it.
Active anticipation of the vacation gives extra doses of joy before the trip. Simultaneously, it alleviates the disappointment of hidden expectations in case things do not turn out as expected. Even if the holidays were awful, nothing can erase the moments of happiness experienced during the anticipation.
Share your anticipation, is caring
Happiness Academics argue that being social helps to be happy. Are you planning to visit Ios, for instance? While checking the Santorini to Ios ferry itinerary, share it with your friends. Experts agree that a very effective method to increase blissfulness is to talk about it with your friends or post it on social media. People are fond of others when they share their adventures rather than when they talk about material goods. According to the above study, you will have many experiences to share. Therefore, more people will like you.
The source of bliss lies in socializing
However, to emphasize the philosopher’s thesis, the fact that happiness lies in sociability is something that, among many others, stems from Aristotle’s saying that man is a social being. Figure out how social one becomes with island hopping and sharing a bunch of experiences from all these islands.
Regarding the value of anticipation, let’s also invoke the renowned bon viveurs, French people. They have an expression of bliss deriving from anticipation: “se rejouir”, which means capturing the experience of imminent happiness in the present while anticipating the future.