In many ways I’m not entirely sure why I called this a “guide” because perhaps the greatest point in this entire article is the fact that there is no one set way to connect with Walt Disney World. But before I fully explain this to the best of my ability, I think it’s important to share what this “connection” is all about.
From an outsiders perspective, or at least someone not as involved in the Disney realm of things as much as many of us, it sounds crazy to be almost emotionally invested in a theme park. In all honesty, I can’t entirely blame them for being confused. Think about it, many of us live lives that revolve around Disney and even a select few of us go as far as to write about it on the internet (guilty as charged), create videos about it, or spend countless hours capturing photos of the parks. It’s not a “normal” thing to do but that’s exactly the point of it all as well.
So many of us have this border line inherent connection with Disney but it begs the question of how can someone entirely new, or simply someone who’s never fully connected with the Disney mindset, experience that for themselves. I’ll never be able to fully convey that process because it really is different for everyone. One day you just kind of have that “I get it” moment. Why? None of us really know.
However, it’s important to realize a few things about Disney when trying to facilitate a Disney vacation that develops these types of feelings for you. Perhaps the single most important thing is going into a vacation and not worrying about anything. Book what you have to, book what you want to, and realize that it really doesn’t matter. What does matter is the goal for your vacation. Those of us that tend to go into a Disney trip expecting nothing leave with the best memories of our lives. It’s weird but it’s not the stuff you plan that you ever remember. Instead, it’s those spontaneous moments. For example, a freak rainstorm soaks your family and then as you stand there you realize, why don’t we just get wet? Instead of worrying about it, like you would anywhere else, you throw on a brightly colored poncho and keep on going. You know what? That’s not the ideal Disney park day, but that’s the day you’ll remember forever.
It’s those moments of simply letting go and realizing that you can set the world aside for a few minutes and be in a place completely dedicated to having fun is something that you can never fully convey to someone. You have to experience it.
It’s funny, I share this example for a reason, because it happened to me! At least 8-10 years ago, we made a trek from Magic Kingdom to Epcot and as soon as we arrived the skies opened up and rain came down in sheets. We were late for a reservation at Le Cellier (back when they were near impossible to get) and I was elected to run and save our table. Don’t ever do that. As we sat there in the meal soaking wet eating steak, I remember looking around and just quietly laughing to myself about how absurd this situation would be anywhere else. At Disney… nobody cared. It’s that simple escape from reality that tends to make me want to journey back to WDW time and time again.
As the day continued on, so did the rain and it was heavy rain. So, instead of just going back and sitting in the room, we decided to stay and just get wet. Did it hurt us to wander around in brightly colored glorified plastic bags? Not a single bit. If I’m completely honest, I remember more about the people I was with and the things we did that day than I do hundreds of other days I’ve spent at WDW. I can’t reiterate enough how the simplest of moments create the most vivd of memories during your WDW vacation. It’s unexpected but after it happens, you wouldn’t have it unfold any other way. That kind of stuff you just can’t plan and it’s important to never try and plan it.
In another way, it’s important to look at Disney from an objective frame of mind. Don’t go into your Disney trip looking for anything. Trust me, you’ll have a moment during every single trip that will truly stop you in your tracks. Sometimes it’s a cast member going above and beyond, sometimes it’s a special event you get to participate in, and other times it’s just sitting around a table talking with people that you call friends or family without the distraction of anything you face in normal, everyday, life. I say it so often but those moments are the ones that actually matter and actually mean something to you.
Another prime example is watching a fireworks show. Sure, the show is excellent, but what’s happening around you is perhaps far more important than any show Disney could ever create. In that moment, you’re surrounded by thousands of people with one thing in common. Every single one of you are creating a memory that means far more than you could ever explain in words. Just look around you during a the show. Look at the families standing there next to each other all gazing up at the sky with a smile on their faces. You cant replace that feeling in any other way or capture that feeling anywhere else.
That is what life should be all about. We get so caught up in doing “things” but it’s so incredibly important to create memories and live in the moment in a way that oh so often gets accidentally overlooked. Life’s not a race to the finish line and Disney can help you step back and appreciate those little things that truly are important in life.
So, while this might not be a true “guide” to connecting with Walt Disney World, I do hope it changes your perspective and offers up a few ideas on how you too can be immersed in this “Disney” mindset so many of us have been blessed to enjoy over the years.
As I always say, it’s not about the attractions, it’s not about the dining, but rather about creating memories with those you care the most about. Those memories are what will truly last a lifetime and stick in your mind for generations. Those simple moments are really what Disney is all about. If you remember anything I ever share with you, please remember that. It makes all the difference in the world.
As always, if you have thoughts, concerns, questions, or even some tips of your own to share, don’t hesitate to reach out to us on Facebook or your favorite social media platform. Give us a follow while you’re there, and we’ll keep the conversation going in the future. We’re not the largest Disney community, but we’re one that’s here and one that listens. Thanks for reading and have a wonderful day wherever you are!
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Ready to Plan?
Last but certainly not least, if you’re starting the planning process, a great place to start are with some of our top planning articles! Looking for dining? Check out Disney World Dining Tips For 2018. Want to start with some more tips? 44 Excellent Disney World Tips for 2018 or Disney World Planning Guide and Tips For 2018 are a great place to begin!
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