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A Guide to Summer Self-Care

A Guide to Summer Self-Care

As those vibrant summer sunsets paint the sky and the longer days and warmer temperatures beckon us outside to spend more time with friends and family, it’s easy to picture relaxing days filled with laughter and fun. Yet, for many people, this warmer season can lead some to struggle with their mental health. Despite this idyllic time for many, others can find themselves overwhelmed by stress and anxiety, struggling to maintain a sense of equilibrium.  

And this isn’t an uncommon scenario. While summer can offer a reprieve from our routine and often mundane winter habits and schedules, it can also pose mental health challenges. But, if we arm ourselves with the right strategies, we can cultivate a season of resilience and thrive in the bright summer sun. 

According to recent studies conducted by the leading mental health organizations such as the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) and the World Health Organization (WHO), the summer season can impact mental wellbeing in a variety of ways. Research indicates a notable increase in mood disorders during summer months. These disorders are attributed to factors such as heightened expectations, disrupted routines, and the prevalence of increased social events. Additionally, the rise in temperature can exacerbate symptoms of anxiety and depression for some, thus underscoring the importance of proactive self-care strategies.

Prioritizing mental health becomes paramount. Let’s look at some evidence-based tips to help nurture wellbeing and savor the joy that summer brings.

One of the first things we can do in these warmer months is to embrace nature and spend time outdoors, enjoying your surroundings whether you are surrounded by lush greenery or turquoise waters. Research suggests that exposure to sunlight and nature can boost your mood and reduce stress levels.

As you are out enjoying nature, stay active by engaging in regular physical activity, whether it’s a leisurely stroll after dinner or an invigorating hike in the mountains and foothills. Exercise releases endorphins, the body’s natural mood elevators, promoting feelings of happiness. 

Incorporate mindfulness techniques into your daily routine to help cultivate inner peace and resilience. It might be through regular meditation, deep breathing exercises, or walking, but it can help alleviate stress and enhance overall mental clarity.

Stay connected with loved ones and friends and make sure to foster meaningful relationships in your life. Summer provides ample opportunities to maintain social connections through various types of gatherings which serve as invaluable sources of support and camaraderie. 

And perhaps most importantly, prioritize your self-care. Set aside time for activities that rejuvenate your mind, body, and spirit. Whether it’s indulging in a soothing bubble bath, enjoying a glass of wine after dinner, reading a good book or pursuing your favorite hobby, prioritize activities that bring you joy as well as relaxation. 

Nurturing our mental well-being is a journey of self-discovery and resilience. By implementing these strategies and fostering a compassionate self-attitude, we can navigate the summer with grace. As you plan your summer vacation and other adventures with friends and family, how will you prioritize your mental health as well?

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