In a throwback to childhood summers, summertime gives us permission to push the reset button and recreate the work/life balance we all crave. Guilt-free. It’s instilled in us to work less and play more. We know from experience that old habits die hard due to the momentum they have behind them, so why not go with the flow of the season?
How To Do It:
Tap into mindfulness: When we’re on vacation, we are often mindful without realizing it: We slow down, multitask less, spend more time in nature and less with technology, have more interactions with people we enjoy, and we reconnect with what it is that fulfills us. Because we’ve slowed down, we are able to notice how we’re feeling and tend to give our bodies what it needs to stay healthy: exercise, sleep, relaxation and proper diet. Embrace these mindful concepts all summer to help you manage stress and maintain a satisfying work/life balance.
Lighten up: Today’s world is competitive, and due to technology we are often expected to work or be available 24/7, even while on vacation. We all need to take a stand and reset our priorities. We’ve become human doings instead of beings. Just like sports require an off-season to avoid injury and burn-out, we need to take a season to strive less and be content with what is happening now. Lighten up your schedule and only do what is necessary. Establish a time to stop work. Create boundaries for answering texts or emails by not responding right away, or at all, if not timely. Work can wait; it will always be there. Your health and well-being may not.
Take a mindcation: Just like a vacation is a respite from what we ordinarily do, we also need a respite from the thinking mind, which always wants something to do. If we are locked in our heads, we can see the beauty of a sunset, but we cannot feel it’s essence. Essence is presence: Be in touch with body, mind, breath, and all the senses. This mindfulness will bring you back to your true self.
Make every week feel like summer vacation: Write a list of favorite rituals (and include some childhood ones) and put them into play, to keep summer in your heart and vacation freedom in your soul. With all summer to practice, your new habits could gain the momentum to become daily rituals that keep the summer in every season of the year.
Enjoy a throwback childhood summer, and may its essence stay with you.
For more ideas, read June chapter of “Twelve Mindful Months: Cultivating a Balanced & Fit Body, Mind & Spirit” by Carol Tibbetts