2022: A Summer For Your Mind, Body, Spirit and Soul
The summer solstice is here and that means the sun is at its most prominent where it can provide us with nourishment, energy and a full body recovery, and help us to alleviate the pent-up stress and anxiety heighten by the not so glorious weather. No offence to other seasons, we very much appreciate what they have to offer, as they all play an integral role in the natural world and in our lives and health, but it’s fair to say the summer puts a smile on the majority of people’s faces.
Everything looks brighter and more colorful when the sun comes out. The flowers are in full bloom, the trees blow gently in the breeze the butterflies come out to play and the birds sing. People generally have a happier demeanor so we must use this energy to our advantage.
Spending more time outside gives us the opportunity to absorb that all important Vitamin D that we lack during the colder months. This strengthens our immune system, boosts our mood and energy levels promoting good mental health, regulates the calcium and phosphorus in our body that supports our bones teeth and muscle health, lowers blood pressure, plus so much more.
So, when you see the sun get out there and use your newfound energy to inspire you to think about the direction of your life and things that you want to achieve, think about things that you enjoy doing or would love to do and make plans to hit these goals. It doesn’t have to cost you a penny to enjoy life and it can be good to find time to be with yourself, so we suggest heading to the park finding a lovely tree to sit under and grab a notepad or a journal and make notes about things that you want now and in the future.
Longer days means more light which research has shown helps our brain to be more mentally alert and improve our productivity levels so if you can, get up early and absorb as much light as possible. Meditation is a great way to take advantage of the early morning light because although we are awake meditation is a very peaceful and calming practice that can make you feel deeply relaxed and give you a great start to your day. It helps you to focus your attention away from your 1001 thoughts but instead observe them and let them go, leaving you feeling less stressed and anxious and feeling like a weight has been lifted off your shoulders. It helps you to tune into your inner self and find answers. It helps you visualise the life you desire. It a practice that give you a positive mindset. It’s not for everyone but if you can start by doing 5 mins of just being still and focusing on your breath everyday you may see and improve the difference in you overall wellbeing and you can increase your time spent in meditation thereafter.
A great start to the day can mean having a good day all round and so try to find other ways of getting as much light as possible throughout the day. If you can’t get out in the sun because of work and other responsibilities try to try sit near a window, whether that be commuting, working in the office or at home, looking after children etc. Take regular breaks outside in the sun and if you can’t do any of the above, the longer days mean you can still go out in the evening to soak up more light.
The sun can also help us to eat healthier and get more active. How great does fruit and veggies taste in hot weather. Some might say this is boring but there are so many variations of salads out there and hundreds of recipes online. The great thing about salad is there doesn’t have to be any cooking involved and so it means less time spent in the kitchen and more time spent enjoying the weather. So why not get a bit more creative with your meal choices, gather up all the fruits and veggies that you enjoy and throw together a quick fruit salad with some yogurt, crème fraiche (which have vegan option too) add some granola nuts etc. to give an extra layer of texture. Similarly with salad you can have all the veggies you enjoy in one bowl and add grains like quinoa, couscous or bulgur wheat, and give some extra tastiness with your fave, meats, fish, cheese etc. Dress your salad with a lovely dressing of choice and enjoy quick delicious food
Exercise is not for everyone, but it is important that we keep up some kind of physical activity. If you really do not like exercising, when the weather is good there is no excuse because 30 mins of walking a day provides a great way to get out and get active and can make all the difference to you overall health. Walking can help you to lose body fat and maintain a healthy weight, strengthen bones and muscles, improve cardiovascular fitness and help prevent or manage serious conditions such as heart disease, cancer, stroke and high blood pressure. The great thing about walking is you can do it with a friend having a chat along the way, you can explore different areas and before you know it 30mins has passed without you even noticing the time.
Whatever exercise routine works for you whether its gym, swimming, yoga, tennis, football, martial arts or a 30 min walk, do it for yourself because you want it, not because you feel you need to look a certain way. If you can, mix it up and do different types of workouts to keep things lively, and to exercise different muscle groups.
We only get a short time with sun, so make sure you take advantage of every sunny day. Whether it’s being in nature, having some me time to reflect and plan, making better food choices or improving your physical activity, make a conscious effort to work on yourself and invest your energy into your mind body and soul.
Please make sure the while enjoying the sun you don’t forget to apply sunscreen for UV protection. Of course as natural skincare specialist we promote using natural sunscreen so check out this article by Good Housekeeping about the 15 Best Mineral Sunscreens to Protect Skin, According to Skincare Pros