Summertime Wellness

After months of dark days and bitter cold temps, summer is here - so slow down, get back to nature and rediscover the joys of life! Make self care a priority, not a luxury. Being overworked and stressed can lead to overeating.

Although there is much fun to be had amidst all of the parades, parties and festivals, summer can also bring its own stressors, which can lead to stress eating. Vitamin D, breathing in fresh air and interacting with nature can do wonders for physical and mental health. Take advantage of the longer days and warmer temperatures. Any outdoor activity - biking, walking, gardening or hiking can allow you to improve your overall health and well-being. Get active and and improve your physical and mental well-being in these four steps.

Feel lighter and less burdened by freeing yourself of clutter. In each room of your home, select three items you can live without, then sell or donate it. Give up relationships with food that no longer boost your health such as fried or fast foods. Choose fresh and whole. Tell negativity to take a hike. Go outside and let the sun shine its rays over you and take several deep breaths, allowing the peace and calmness to settle in.

Devices we use to connect can help with that, but also keep us at a distance, as human existence does rely on connecting ourselves with others. Disconnect with your devices and commit to interact directly with people. In a social gathering, put your device away and focus on individuals. A healthy social life also is critical to mental wellness. Those who spend time outdoors have strong bonds with neighbors and their community.

Stay focused on the now. If you feel distracted, head outside. Nature increases the ability to focus and can improve your attention span. Take a short walk admiring the trees or plants around you.

There is an inherent peace in being in nature. It can help clear our minds of worry and tension. Incorporating physical activity outdoors can increase energy and decrease depression. Also, spending more time in nature and in natural light can do wonders for sleep, as natural light normalizes the body’s internal clock, sleeping patterns and can help us wake up refreshed.

So, take a nap in a hammock, a stroll in the park, practice yoga outside or enjoy a peaceful boat ride and make time to connect and savor the summer! Your healthy summer habits will serve you well into fall and beyond!