You know that feeling after a full, beautiful, fun day outside in the heat of the summer? That dirty, exhausted, sun-drenched feeling of contentment? That's what I want for you, me, and everyone this summer and beyond. Whether creating a life you don't need a vacation from looks like simplifying, making some changes in your career and/or lifestyle, or re-assessing your priorities (all of which could really be synonymous activities), I'm here to agree that it is not easy but it is most likely worthwhile. Because who doesn't want more mini (or maxi) summer breaks all day, every day?
My yoga teacher recently spoke of his cell phone warning him that it was running dangerously low in space. It reminded him how important it is to be the opposite by making sure to create spaciousness within ourselves and our lives. We all know we are not our best selves when we run dangerously low on space. With a little more spaciousness in our lives, there will be room for us to have all the summer breaks we need and want.
Below you will find some hacks I have on creating that spaciousness for yourself, specifically geared towards the summer months, even if your life circumstances are such that make this sound impossible.
Summer Ideas and Hacks for Creating Spaciousness
Spaciousness Hack for the Constant Do-er
I can’t decide if I’m a fan or not of bucket lists but I think this will be a good one for a do-er (Hello! My name is Jen and I’m a do-er). Schedule in your spaciousness by creating a bucket list that includes weekly or daily spaciousness tricks, like
-> walk on the beach
-> catch a summer concert with friends
-> make a summer cocktail or mocktail and drink it in your backyard or on your porch maybe with a good book, or without
Spaciousness Hack for the Person with the Full Schedule
You are the person that needs spaciousness the most. The saying that those who don’t have time to meditate need meditation the most? Well that applies here. Those who have no space for spaciousness, need it the most. I suggest start with creating a routine of small spaciousness creating activities that take place during the transition between other activities. And hopefully they become such a habit and so enjoyable that you slowly allow more time for them. Some examples are
-> when you have driven somewhere like maybe the supermarket, before getting out of the car do some slow breathing and/or mediation
-> before you get back to your busy life after eating a meal, take a quick walk outside and really observe the nature around you
-> before going to bed, do some quick yoga stretches
Spaciousness Hack for the Busy Parent
Being a parent it may feel like you are constantly being torn in so many different directions. Luckily you also get many chances throughout the day to play and let life be slow and spacious if you take the opportunity that your children offer you to follow them into their world. So go there as much as you can. And there are lots of opportunities in the summer with so many fun outdoor activities and the fact that the kids are around a lot more.
-> get involved with creative play and learn a new craft with your kids
-> if your kid goes to a summer camp or another activity, let them teach you something new they learned that day
-> lay in the grass and look at the clouds passing by and talk about what they look like
-> when you are driving play games that allow you to be mindful and take in the beautiful summer world outside your window, like I Spy
-> take advantage of that inflatable pool and lounge in there on a beautiful summer day, and even better, on a beautiful summer night after the kids have gone to bed
Spaciousness Hack for the Person Who Hates Woo
So you are not into mediation or slow, conscious breathing. There are many techniques from above that allow spaciousness and mini summer breaks without the woo, like a cocktail or mocktail in your garden. Yes please!!! Some other fun, non-woo mini summer breaks might be
-> trying a new hike every weekend
-> going out to lunch or brunch somewhere where you can sit outside and tell yourself you are not allowed to get up and go for at least an hour and a half (this works better if you have some friends and a few drinks to enjoy the meal with)
-> try to shop at least once a week at the local farmer’s market at a leisurely pace trying all the samples of the seasonal fruit and veggies
Let me know if you tried any of these and enjoyed them or if you have any other spaciousness hacks of your own.