Can we say summer is now officially here? Since it was such a long time coming, we need to make the most of it! Here are 6 therapeutic activities you need to try this summer for a slow and laidback attitude during the warmer months.
#1 Get Out at Sunset
Wherever you are are in the world, there's a beautiful sunset right outside your window. Whether you're travelling this summer or simply sitting in your own garden, make sure to get your mindful moment with the descent of the day. Sunset has a deeper spiritual meaning of signifying the passage of time and marking the point of new beginnings. Being there to witness the sun setting is a great way to feel revived and at one with the present.
#2 Visit a Lavender Farm
Last year I visited a lavender farm for the first time and it lived up to my long-standing expectations. The woozy and lazy scent of lavender guides the mind into a state of relaxation and calm, so spend some time out in the fields snipping sprigs into a paper bag to take home with you. Once dried, you can put the budding flowers into a little drawstring bag to put under your pillow, which can help you sleep at night. You can even create your own, homebrewed, herbal beauty products or sprinkle the buds into the solidifying wax of a homemade candle.
#3 Make Homemade Lemonade
Who would have thought that lemonade could be so easy to make? Recipes can be as simple as combining lemons, caster sugar and cold water into a blender. An alternative to carbonated drinks and a sweet and sour summery delight, homemade lemonade is the perfect way to top off an al fresco dining experience for friends and family. You could even incorporate the lavender you've been picking into the recipe for an interesting infusion of herbal zing. Trust me, if you haven't tried Lavender Lemonade look for it on sale in a farm shop or market!
#4 Go Camping
For the ultimate summer-hygge experience, unpack the old tent and gather up some firewood for a slow and steady weekend away sleeping under the stars. Something about the simplicity of camping draws us back to primitive times when depending on nature and our friends for survival were absolutely key. These days camping can be made much more glamorous of course, so don't be put off by the prospect of having nowhere to plug in your kettle or hair straighteners. Whether you would prefer to live comfortably in a 'glamping' bell tent or go completely off-grid, it's the intimacy of living directly within nature that gives us a healthy and happy vibe.
#5 Visit a Farmers Market
Support local businesses this summer by visiting your local farmers market. From the midst of Los Angeles to the smallest of villages in rural England, you'll be able to find a farmers market close by. Produce from the market will be much more nutrient-rich thanks to lowering food miles and you'll find a boost in your wellbeing and personal fulfilment knowing you have contributed to strengthening your own local economy.
#6 Buy Yourself a Bunch Flowers
While you're perusing the farmers market, pick yourself up a bunch of flowers. It might seem simple, or even a big waste of money, but flowers in a pretty jug at home can have a great benefit to our wellbeing. Flowers brighten the home and bring a touch of nature indoors which releases our happy hormones. Try to buy the bunches with the most buds rather than going for the flowers that are fully in bloom, so that you can have them on display for longer before they droop. And if you simply can't justify buying flowers, go out and look for flowers you can take cuttings from in your own garden. You could also try taking cuttings from wildflowers growing in the hedgerows, but obviously, make sure you're not cutting flowers from somebody else's property first!
You're now all set with a little list of slow and therapeutic summer to-do's to get you outside and enjoying the warmer air! Give them a try and immerse yourself in the scents, sounds and sights of the season for a better sense of wellbeing!