End-of-Summer Goals: Relax, Rejuvenate, and Refocus
As Labor Day waves the End-of-Summer flag, we are forced to admit that lazy days at the beach will soon be replaced with autumn’s crisp breeze. Granted, as beautiful as autumn is, I personally look back on an amazing summer that I am not ready to say goodbye to just yet. Realizing that I’m going to be back full-force into the work week and start donning long-sleeves again makes me contemplate moving to warmer climates year-round.
But it’s not just the spectacular weather that we love about summer, is it? It’s the summer mindset. In the summer, though we still work, there is a certain air of relaxation about us. Some offices grant early leaves on Fridays, or long weekends throughout the summer in general. We understand that many of our family, friends, and co-workers may be on vacation for periods of time. We may indulge in spending that we don’t at other times during the year.
Summer is the time to take a moment and breathe. So that is why I say, now that the summer is officially coming to a close, that we must make sure we are doing exactly that—taking the necessary moments to stop and breathe, and re-energize ourselves for the rest of the year.
Here are some ways you can relax, rejuvenate, and refocus before your summer ends:
Give yourself a day at the beach (or your nearest body of water)
Think about a time you sat by the beach, or a lake, and felt peace surround you. Even if you don’t get into the water, generally speaking, being by a body of water causes our bodies to relax. Marine biologist Wallace J. Nichols discusses the relationship between water and the human brain in what he calls, “Blue Mind.” So what’s a great way to ensure that you relax before the cold weather creeps in? Take a day and venture out to that body of water. Do it with friends, family, or by yourself. Enjoy the nature that surrounds you and actually soak it in. We don’t nearly do it enough, especially with our hectic schedules.
Do one crazy end-of-summer activity
What are some activities you may associate with summer? Outdoor concerts, overnight beach trips, or camping? Squeeze one of those in. Let loose before you start to rejuvenate and refocus. Be outside as much as possible. Have that last rowdy summer barbeque. Even if you’re telling yourself you have no time – try to make the time. You deserve it, and it’s nice to let the summer go out with a bang.
Unplug for a day
Of course, you can unplug for a day while refocusing, or enjoying that day at the beach. I encourage unplugging as much as possible before the summer ends. Truly relaxing, getting yourself prepared, and diving back into our usual hectic schedules would be best accomplished with less distractions that we can get from our smartphones. Less TV, more books. Less phone checking, more looking up and enjoying what’s around you.
Give yourself a day to prepare and organize
It’s like going back to school (unless you’re a teacher or still a student and you actually are going back). We are excited about it, but part of us dreads it a bit too. It’s always easier to face and tackle when we are organized and prepared. Give yourself a day to clean that room that’s been messy. Organize your belongings again. Maybe it’s the nerd in me, but I get excited by new office supplies. Why not buy some now? Treat the inner kid. This is more of a psychological aspect of refocusing, but it truly works. There’s something that eases you when you know you’ve got everything set straight.
Re-visit your end-of-year goals
When it comes to refocusing at the end of the summer, re-visiting your end-of-year goals can be incredibly helpful. We typically make year goals in January (or New Year’s Resolutions), but we can be guilty of these falling to the wayside as months pass. As your summer ends, revisit some things you might have told yourself back in January – or make new goals that you want to complete by December. This will increase your motivation for the fall, as well as give you a more realistic timeline of September-December as opposed to January-January to accomplish them.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: AMY VAUGHN
As a Montclair State University graduate with a BA in English, my first love is writing, specifically nonfiction and short stories. International human rights and women’s rights are also strong passions of mine. I hope to someday be able to call myself Chief Editor, human rights advocate, and jewelry designer. I can’t live without Mad Men (er, Netflix), soy chai lattes, or my adorable Wheaten terrier, Pippin.