Summertime Self-Care: 7 Ways to Tend To Yourself
With self-care being a necessity, summertime is an excellent time to get it in. Summers are all about having fun, reflecting, a time of romance and infinite potential. It’s the season for outdoorsy stuff, endless time at the beach, boat rides, pool parties and other youthful and rejuvenating adventures.
I’ve spent some time researching various practices and talking to several different people about how they do self-care in the warmer months, and here are some of their suggestions.
1. Plan some time away: Vacay or Staycay.
“It’s not about balance, it’s about designing a work-home-family life that makes you feel good. A life you don’t need a vacation from.” ~ Jacqueline Fisch, Unfussy Mom: simplifying your life
For instance, take a road trip to somewhere, maybe a beautiful destination just outside your city or town; or explore the untold history of your own city; be a #TIYOT – tourist in your own town. List all the activities you’d like to do and pick them off week by week. Summertime is full of all kinds of affordable stuff – music festivals and yoga in City parks, street festivals filled with all the goodies we can overdose on, museums and even historical tours. Lots of activities to make the most of, especially if you’re on a budget.
2. Become a kid again.
Who does not like a good swing at the park?! The highlight of my park days as a kid was doing just that. Sitting in a swing and taking over the world as I dared myself to go higher. Nothing personifies freedom more than this. For you, it may be sprinkler baths on the front lawn or more organized family trips to the water parks or just having people come over to cook and laugh out loud.
3. Unplug from technology.
We don’t need statistics to tell us we are over-attached to our technology. We already know this is true because every few hours another video goes viral. Early this year I started experimenting with putting my phone and tablet away an hour or two before bed. It gave me more time to get into some meditation or reading before finally falling into sleep. Experts suggest unplugging for an entire day especially when we are on vacation.
4. Spend time near water.
Omg, this!! I love being near the water. To me, it is the most calming thing ever! Something about the sound of moving water, and boats as they float along the waterway. It cleanses you; mentally and spiritually. Water has long been a symbol of transformation and healing. In Ayurveda, the ancient Indian medicinal wisdom, and traditional Chinese medicine, the water element is crucial to balancing the body and creating physical harmony.
Rivers have long been used as sacred places, and in many different spiritual contexts, water has symbolized rebirth, spiritual cleansing, and salvation. I’ve sat for hours along the bay after my Mom passed away. It was a daily ritual that contributed positively to my grief recovery. I guarantee whatever challenge life may bring you can be solved by spending time near water.
5. Savor fresh foods.
Woman’s Day sums it up well in this article with their Top 16 Foods to Eat in the Summertime. So many colorful options make up the fruit and veggies aisles, it is almost impossible to pass them by without picking up a few. It is a fantastic time to experiment with new healthy dishes, desserts and fruit bowls. Make your farmers market your fave stop on the weekend and stock up on some delish finds.
6. Wake up earlier.
Getting up early has always been a thing in my family. It doesn’t matter what day it is; we were all blessed with the ‘early wake-up gene’ – if there is such a thing. Bah humbug on those days when you came in from the club at 4 am in the morning! I’d find myself bright eyed and bushy tailed at 8 am with 4 hours of sleep under my belt and dragging the rest of the day. The huge benefit of waking early is that it provides some quiet time to savor your cup of coffee/tea, enjoy a short walk or “read something that nourishes your soul. For me, I incorporate my 15 min yoga practice, meditation, and reading. Talk about rejuvenating! It sets up my day well.
7. Spend time outside.
Pick an outdoor activity that truly makes you feel free and lights a fire in your soul. These activities can be anything from gardening, hiking, biking or berry picking, she said. Other ideas include tennis, swimming, golfing and doing your workouts outdoors. So many choices. If you are like me and love the water, kayaking and dragon-boating are great summertime activities and doubles into a workout. My recommendation is to engage in what you love, and it will become your go-to thing without much effort.
This summer, consider the activities that will help you embrace self-care as a black woman and get used to enjoying yourself!
If self-care is something you’d like to do more of and have some time this summer to devote to YOU, then my upcoming 6-week program, RESETNOW, which starts on July 05, may be for you. Drop me a line at hello@ mellanymotivates.com to begin the registration process or click HERE to find out more.