What a strange title. There can’t be any dangers of summer in Northern Colorado, right?
Summer can be an amazing time filled with relational connectivity, reconnecting with lost passions or discovering new ones, and a renewed sense of adventure and curiosity! Some folks have a more positive experience with their work-life balance over the summer, or may experience more of an opportunity to travel and connect with friends and family.
Summer can also be a time when you can see bad habits start to develop…Here are some important considerations for anyone regardless of age for the summer!
The Balance of Boredom and Productivity
Every person has their own individual relationships with boredom and what that means, but I’m a firm believer that a little boredom here or there never hurts. I’ll take it even further and say boredom can be productive or unproductive. Had a ‘go, go, go’ week? Why not make a few hours for a summer hammock session in the park. The summer can create time for that recharging. Unproductive boredom may look like being too wrapped up in the newest trash tv netflix series (I too, am guilty of this!) that distracts from pursuing passions or new hobbies. A good question to ask: Am I grounding in this time to make room for rest and recharging, or is this substituting for new experiences and adventures?
Sleep is a point of concern I see consistently impacting both adult and adolescent routines. I can remember the amount of times as a school counselor that I would see students “zombie walking” through the halls the first week of school readjusting to that 6-7 AM wakeup time after a summer connected to friends and technology. But let’s not excuse the adults either! Summer can be a time where we can really jump into dysregulated sleep patterns. It can be easy to spend too much time indoors or in the cool basement watching the newest netflix series, much to the chagrin of our body’s circadian rhythm and sleep-wake cycles. Suggestion: Find a balance between soaking up that sunshine outside and cooling off inside to promote a healthy sleep-wake cycle. Try as much as possible to keep a consistent bedtime schedule.
Routine and Adventure
Think of the summer as a time to “stack” healthy habits or build in routines into your life that will provide you a sense of well-being and groundedness for when the busier fall arrives. Stacking habits can look like finding the opportunity to build in healthy activities or routines that can provide you and your wonderful brain some consistency and sense of positive well-being. What can help you now that will build towards a healthier, happier you in the fall? For many folks, the summer can bring a “cooling down” period when it comes to work, especially for the college students I work with. One thing I always like to ask: How will you cultivate a sense of adventure this summer or what do you hope to learn about yourself? Summer can be a time of rest and relaxation, but it can also be a time to try something new you’ve always dreamed of…Book recommendation: Atomic Habits: An Easy & Proven Way to Build Good Habits & Break Bad Ones by James Clear
But most importantly, have fun and relax!