Summertime is known for its seemingly unending possibilities. It is a season where many of us are faced with voids in and/or changes of schedule. A stretch where we are offered some more advantageous prospects than we are normally used to. Yet, how many of us actually make the choice to experience the ‘more?’
Excuses aside, here are a few areas where we can act on the opportunities that lie in simply having free time:
Whether you are on break from school, going on vacation from your 9-5, wisely opting for a staycation or none of the above; there are things to give ourselves to daily that matter if we will let them. Intentionality in what we create is imperative to the impact we make on the world around us and the amount of joy and satisfaction that we are able to find in that which we give our time to.
Our contributions, even to a place of employment or a people we serve, should come from being present in what we are doing. Be mindful that if it is worth spending your time on, it must require all of you. Don’t half-ass anything in your life, because you want to experience fullness don’t you?
Why not relish this time by committing more time to being with others? For some reason, the summer months just seem to be the perfect time to reconnect with people. Go visit family. Host your friends. Get convinced to do things you would never think of doing on your own for that someone that you love. These are the moments to stop, seek and bask in real, deep connection with the ones we care about most.
Also, it’s just as refreshing to meet and engage with people we have not known. Be open, reach out and reap the reward of extending common courtesy, an unexpected chat or being blind-sided (in a good way) by an equally unsuspecting soul. Everyone has something to share and gain, so welcome one and all.
There is so much value in adventure, in delving into some place you have never been, in order that you may experience something wonderful. As Picasso once said, “The purpose of art is washing the dust of daily life off our souls.” It doesn’t always involve a drastic change, for simplicity goes a long way. Ask yourself daily, how you can press in and cultivate that which you love. Walking in the woods? Playing games with friends? Sitting down at your piano? Driving across statelines? Whatever it takes to wake up some wonder on the inside, go-jump-do!
Now is as good a time as any to get inspired, think wild things, and run towards impossibilities. Take a hope that has been haunting you for the past however many weeks, months, years… and say it out loud! Acknowledge the reality of what you want, what you desire. Call on a friend who will lend you their ears and help process it out. Refrain from the limitations your minds will try to put on the grandeur of those beautiful things. Then practically pull out one step you can take in the direction of what you just envisioned. Have grace for yourself along the journey of dreaming: Try. Fail, even. Wait…. Always get up. And keep moving forward.
Firstly and lastly, take a few steps back to focus on you. Remember who you are, all you love and why you do the things you do. Meditate, be still, and sleep! There is no shame in stopping to take inventory, to celebrate or to just bring a little gratitude into your present. It’s rather necessary actually.
Let’s allow this season to remind us to have fun as we thirst for something more, something apart from the monotony, our days can become just that if we forget what we are made of. This summer can be a gift of rest and rejuvenation. A jumpstart mid-way through our year, a refreshment of vision that may stir our hopes again for those dreams that may seem unfulfilled and any plans that are beginning to feel far off. The truth is, they could be closer than we think- if we would just take this time to press in.