As August starts to wind down, you might find yourself wondering where the summer went. FOMO (AKA the “Fear Of Missing Out”) in the summertime is real – and scrolling through social media feeds overflowing with other people’s vacation photos might trigger some feelings that you might not be making the most of the season. This can ring particularly true if you’re stuck at work, attending summer classes, or busy looking after your kids. The good news is that you don’t have to be lounging on a yacht off the coast of Mauritius to appreciate the perks of summer – we promise. Here are 5 simple ways to help you squeeze the most out of your summer while the sun is still shining:
Make a summer playlist and take a walk outside
Chances are, you can think of at least a couple of songs that instantly remind you of summer. Throw together some of your favourite summer tunes, put in your headphones, and take a walk outside while the weather is still nice. If you’re lacking inspiration – not to worry – most music streaming services have premade playlists for nearly every occasion! You may be surprised by how much some upbeat music and fresh air can lift your mood on even just a short walk.
Open all the windows
Maybe getting outside to enjoy the weather today isn’t an option – but you can still take advantage of the warmer temperatures by opening the windows and letting some fresh air into your space. The feel of a warm summer breeze and the glow of letting some natural light in can be helpful if you’ve been feeling cooped up.
Read that book that’s been collecting dust on your shelf
It’s common to worry about not being “productive enough” in today’s always-available, performance-driven world. Our constant “go-go-go” society is a major reason why we often struggle to find time to do things we enjoy, like reading for pleasure! Expecting yourself to be productive during all waking hours is exhausting, and frankly, impossible. So, why not crack open that book you’ve been meaning to read for months? Enjoy taking some time for yourself. If you need some convincing that hobbies are a good use of your time – here is your reminder that doing whatever you need to do to recharge is absolutely essential if you want to fully show up for your loved ones and responsibilities. You can’t pour from an empty cup.
Take your workout outside
The summer is a great time to find low-cost or free community exercise classes. Check your local leisure or recreation centre schedules for drop-in outdoor fitness classes like aqua-fit or yoga. If you can’t find something that interests you, grab a friend or two, head outside, and make your own outdoor fitness fun! Maybe find a local trail to explore, peak to hike, or lake to swim.
Play tourist in your own city
It’s alarming how quickly work and/or school demands seem to lock us into their routines. In many ways, routines can be incredibly helpful for keeping things (and people!) organized. But, they can also prevent us from discovering new joys. You don’t have to go far to feel like a tourist in your city – try that new cafe in town, explore a new neighbourhood, maybe even sign up for a walking tour and learn something new about your community. In this temporary break from routine, you might just uncover a new hidden gem.
Most importantly, remember to check in with yourself. The pressure to have the best, most exciting summer ever can be overwhelming, but don’t forget that taking small, simple actions to improve your mood and wellbeing is worthwhile. Consider your day-to-day routine: is there something small you could add to or change about it that might make each day even a little more enjoyable? If the answer is yes, give it a shot! You deserve it.