I was at a dinner party over Memorial Day Weekend when the topic of packing came up. One brave soul spoke up and said that her problem was that she never knew what she might want to wear in the future. How could she not over pack? She needed a variety of choices. If you are of the same mind set, here are some tips to help you plan exactly what you need:
- Check weather reports before you leave. (If you have a smart phone there are numerous apps or you can check on line.) As your departure day approaches you will be able to adjust your choices should there be an unexpected shift in the temperature at your destination.
- If you plan to stay with relatives or friends you can borrow anything you forgot or didn't expect to need; you'll be able to do laundry; you can decide to leave items like an umbrella, shampoo or body lotion at home. (Do check the availability of items you'd like to leave at home. This is not the time for assumptions.)
- Stay with a basic color scheme so that everything you pack can be worn in a variety of ways. I would avoid clothing that wrinkles easily like linen.
- Pack versatile items like a rain coat with a zip out lining or long pants that turn into shorts when you zip off the bottoms.
- Give yourself wardrobe choices by taking extra accessories. There's visual magic in scarves and jewelry.
- Get used to the idea of planning your wardrobe in advance by doing it at home. Practice makes perfect.
If strong emotional issues come up at the very idea of leaving that huge suitcase at home, do a little journaling to find out what the root cause might be. For example:
- Was your mother a dictator about what you were allowed to wear when you were a child?
- Did you have very few choices in your closet as a teenager or young adult?
- Have you ever lost everything in a fire, flood, storm or earthquake?
- Were you ever the victim of a theft?
- Has an airline ever lost your suitcase?
- You won't have to wait at the carousel for your bag to arrive: it will be with you the entire time.
- You'll have room in your suitcase for items you purchase on your trip.
- You will save money by not having to check a bag. The airlines charge us for breathing these days!