Take Care of Yourself This Summer: 7 Simple Tips

by Henrik Edberg

Relaxify Your Summer

“Then followed that beautiful season… Summer… Filled was the air with a dreamy and magical light; and the landscape lay as if new created in all the freshness of childhood.”
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

“The time to relax is when you don’t have time for it.”
Sydney J. Harris

The summer is here.

And for many of us it is a time of vacations, a time of being free from school or a slow time at work or in your business.

So it is a good time to focus on taking a bit of extra good care of yourself to unwind and decompress.

And that is exactly what today’s article is all about.

I hope you will find a couple of tips among these that will help you to recharge yourself and that you may even carry with your into the darker and colder seasons of this year.

1. Just watch the clouds go by.

During the months of continuous intense work it is easy to get trapped in the mindset that you have to do something pretty much all the time. This can add a lot of tensions and stress.

So try doing nothing at all from time to time this summer. Just go for a walk in the woods. Sit by the lake and take in the wonderful summer landscape. Or lie down on the grass and just watch the clouds going by.

Do only that, savor the moments of summer and feel how the inner tensions flow out of your mind and body.

2. Go phone- and internet-free for a time.

I’ll be disconnected for much of this summer. I’ll not go online unless it is necessary. I’ll only check my emails maybe once a day or once every other day. And I’ll leave my phone at home while I’m outside in the sun enjoying a book.

I recommend trying this one out, especially if you tend to spend a lot of time at work or in school with being online or talking on the phone.

Start with just staying away from your email and phone for maybe 24 hours. Then check them.

And you may see that you haven’t missed much by not being available all the time. But instead discover that your stress levels have dropped quite a bit and it feels easier to fully focus on your family, friends or your hobby.

3. Appreciate what you did between New Year’s Eve and the start of this summer.

Half of 2014 has now gone by.

And there might have been some worries. Perhaps you were angry with yourself more than a few times during these 6 months. Or disappointed in what you did, didn’t do or what happened in your life.

When the stress and inner tensions are plentiful then it is easy to get stuck in focusing on what went wrong or on your own setbacks or mistakes.

So take a break from that.

Ask yourself: What can I appreciate about what I did and I accomplished during these 6 months?

It doesn’t always have to be big things. And be sure to appreciate what you did, the effort you put in even if things didn’t go exactly as planned.

4. Go slow.

This will also dial your stress down.

And, perhaps even more importantly, help you to be in the moment and fully enjoy all the sights, sounds, smells and people of your summer.

Instead of being half-lost in the future or in a memory while life and perhaps something really wonderful is happening right in front of you.

5. Say no to the shoulds of summer.

There are sneaky shoulds in life. They can make a vacation filled with things you “just have to do before the summer is over” seem like draining work. And they’ll leave you more tired than you were before your time off even started.

So avoid them by asking yourself: Will this matter in 5 years? Or even 5 weeks?

Zooming out like this makes it easier to find a healthier perspective on things and to see the real value of doing something. It makes it easier to simply relax and to say no to doing something because you realize that it frankly isn’t that important anyway.

6. Spend more time doing what you love.

Maybe it is fishing. Or going out into the woods and picking berries and mushrooms. Or painting. Or reading books. Or playing with your kids or hanging out with an old friend.

No matter what it might be, think about how you can fit more what you love doing into not only your summer but the rest of your year too.

Take a couple of minutes and sit down with a pen and a piece of paper. Think about what you spend your time on during a normal week.

Then find 1-2 things during your regular weeks that you can do less of. Or things you can simply say no to so that you have a bit more time and energy over each week during the summer, fall and winter for what you love doing.

7. Remind yourself: rest and recharge time will pay off both for my health and results in the long-run.

You are not a robot. Even though you or other people may think so from time to time. It’s a simple thought mistake many of us have made or still make.

But it is not the best option. And not just for your mental and physical health in the long run and to prevent for example getting burned out.

No – because in my experience at least – if you get a real break over the summer and during your vacation then that will also pay off greatly in your performance both at work and in your relationships too.

Because your energy will reload for real, your motivation will go up and you’ll feel inspired and curious again as you dump a big box of old stress and tensions by the side of the road.

So when you feel stressed or like you just “should do” something this summer then remind yourself that in the long-run you’ll gain more in any area of your life by getting a bit more rest and recharging time.

Image by Lali Masriera (license).



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{ 17 comments… read them below or add one }

Anonymous June 26, 2014 at 7:47 pm

I religiously read your posts and think your perspective is inspiring and brilliant and refreshing. However you only to people with M-F 9-5 Weekends & summers off jobs and I continuously feel frustrated/sad I can rarely apply the advice in your posts.
If you could expand to include those with less traditional lives or schedules I think that would be wonderful.
Thank you for considering this feedback!

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Sarah June 27, 2014 at 12:50 am

Love no. 2. I feel like I ought to do way more of this. And you’re right, every time I do do it (usually unintentionally), I discover that the world hasn’t broken in my absence. A good feeling. :)

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Gabrielle June 27, 2014 at 1:29 am

Hi Henrik!You motivate me!Thank you!

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Joan June 27, 2014 at 3:25 am

I love fishing in the evening and watching the moon start to appear. I feel no blame or shame while I’m doing that.

I am a daughter of a narcissistic mother, I get great relief from your blog, and just opening up your emails, just makes my day.

Thank you

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Kuan June 27, 2014 at 4:09 am

Admist our race through life, we can very easily overlook the 7 tips and compromise our well-being which is of utmost importance. The tips must be consciously chosen and actively applied in order to reap their benefits.

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charli June 27, 2014 at 6:13 am

I think you are doing a good job but it will be nice and more explicit if you can insert some videos of what you talking about, also try to go deeper in your comments so people will really be focus on it, regards, charlie.

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Wal June 27, 2014 at 8:36 am

Thanks for this interesting article! I will try to remember about your tips!

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Anonymous June 27, 2014 at 2:18 pm

Thanks for the reminder to live our lives than just to exist. The post reminds me of Pablo Neruda’s ‘Keeping Quiet’ as well . . .

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Kannan June 27, 2014 at 3:13 pm

Thank you for an wonderful article. It has always been that your articles gives me a better way to lead life. It boosts my energy level for the rest of my hours. Keep doing the good work.

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Sebastian Aiden Daniels June 27, 2014 at 8:01 pm

Thanks for the great post mate. I agree that disconnecting for a while can be such a soothing release. I recently went camping and it was glorious : D. I do often need a reminder to do what I love. I tend to, but sometimes I forget. I haven’t read a good book in a while and that is a shame because I love reading. You have inspired me to go to Barnes and Noble later today and pick up a book : D.

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Diana Marinova June 28, 2014 at 8:50 am

Good tips – as usual :)

I loved the second tip! While I am phone-less most of the time, I am not sure how I can try the other angel – going without internet. I work entirently online – any ideas how to apply the second tip without disrupting my work?

Thanks, Henrik – your posts are always refreshments ng :)

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Simon June 30, 2014 at 9:40 am

Really Fenomenale Job, God Bless You Man.

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Reclaiming Your Future July 2, 2014 at 6:59 am

Such simple and common sense advice and yet so true. We often need to slow down and be more gentle with ourselves reminding ourselves of good times and learning to become a little more present in the moment!
Great post Henrik! :)

Toni

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Rose July 2, 2014 at 5:17 pm

I soooo agree with not thinking about the “shoulds”. I realized I was feeling that way while reading your post. Thank you for writing this – it has helped to straighten out my thinking so now I don’t feel the silly pressure I had put upon myself. Have a great summer 2014 :)

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patricia July 3, 2014 at 4:57 am

Thank you so much. I love your emails and motivation tips. It makes my day.

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Holly July 6, 2014 at 5:34 pm

Hello. I just discovered your blog and love your thoughts on simplifying summer. I’ve just moved my comfy lawn chair to a shady spot under the wisteria where my wifi won’t reach and I have privacy. When not at work, that’s where I’ll be. And I feel encouraged and energized by the first 6 months of this year because I’m a therapist but have long wanted to blog humor and motivational tips and so I took the plunge. http://yakkityyaktalkingback.com

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Edmund July 9, 2014 at 3:08 pm

Hi Henrik,

I like your thoughts on how to simplify my life this summer. Personally, I am guilty of spending too much time in front of the computer to work on my business. I think it is time for me to take a few days off to really enjoy the summer and reflect on what I am grateful for in the past 6 months.

Regards,
Edmund

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