A common conversation topic at the end of every summer (especially in the Pacific Northwest) is whether or not we got to do the things we wanted to do, and that often leads to people talking about how they regret not getting more out of their summer. This is a shame because people also seem to equate summer with self-care, including getting much-needed rest and relaxation. So we wondered -- what if we do a whole post on self-care and getting the most from your summer plans?
If getting self-care into your schedule is something you're working on, or it's important to you to make sure you get the most from your summer, read on...
SELF-CARE + SUMMER EXERCISE:
One thing we find is that folks unintentionally adopt generic/other people's definitions of self-care and summer success. We see commercials and ads featuring gangs of people jumping in water and drinking piña coladas and having huge bbqs and think, "What's wrong with me? I haven't done one of those things and it's already August!". Interestingly, maaaany people, after doing the following exercise, realize that none of those activities are aligned with their personal core drivers, so it's not that surprising that their brain made no time for those activities or showed little motivation to squeeze them into their life. Here's how get clear on your own definition of self-care and summer goals:
STEP 1: USE YOUR MEMORIES
The first step is to grab a piece of paper or notebook and make a list of 3-6 of your fondest summer memories (from any time of your life). Here are a couple of examples from our Store Manager, Mimi:
- "Every summer growing up I spent time on a pontoon boat with a few of my closest friends, we would anchor in the middle of the lake, talk about life, occasionally sip a Mikes Hard Lemonade, jump in the water and feel like we were all alone each sunny summer day."
- "Since I moved to Portland, my favorite summer memories involve being on my best friend's boats with her and her husband, setting anchor and soaking up the sun, tubing, and eating picnic lunches."
STEP 2: IDENTIFY YOUR ELEMENTS
Once you have a list of 3-6 memories, check out this list of Replenishing Elements, and circle 6-8 things from it that those memories have in common. For Mimi, common elements that came up were:
- Mind: Not thinking
- Social: The presence of a tight crew
- Environment: Beauty and Water
STEP 3: IDENTIFY ADDITIONAL SELF-CARE ELEMENTS
Now repeat Step 1 and 2 but with your favorite moments that helped you feel rested and re-energized. You should now have 6 to 12 elements circled that makes up your personal list of what makes for a great, restful (or re-energizing) time.
STEP 4: BRAINSTORM
Take 10-15 minutes to come up with any and every crazy idea of activities you could do that involve your list of elements. Use Brainstorm Rules -- which means there is no bad idea -- we encourage you to be silly because the goal here is quantity and kookiness. Why is that? Turns out humans have an easier time scaling back a crazy idea down to a do-able idea, vs taking a do-able idea and making it creative and innovative. As our dear friend Albert Einstein said: "If at first the idea is not absurd, then there is no hope for it". Make sure you come up with at least 10 ideas that would include some of those elements.
Here are some ideas for Mimi's elements:
- 20 minute walks along the Willamette waterfront (okay not that wild, but a start)
- First Sunday of the Month until it gets cold -- Sauvie Island with 2 friends!
- Rent jet skis
- River floating
- Pool day (somewhere!)
- Coast trip with friends
- Rent a houseboat for a weekend stay-cation
- Magazine day on the Hawthorne Docks
STEP 5: STOP - You are done for the day, rest your brain and let those ideas simmer.
STEP 6: PLAN - A couple days later give yourself 20 minutes and jot down answers to the following questions:
- Which of these ideas can be scaled down that I can do next week?
- Which of these ideas can be scaled down that I can do next month?
- Which activities could be done during the week in one hour?
- Which activities could be done on the weekends?
In the workshop, we’re going to walk you through these steps, and then take it further. We will take your ideas and turn them into things you can build into your schedule and life, no matter how intense it is.
If you're thinking of joining us for this upcoming workshop, sign up soon, as our last three workshops sold out. More info below.
SELF-CARE AND SUMMER GOALS WORKSHOP
This workshop is for you if:
- You feel too busy to enjoy the season
- You are feeling overwhelmed by social summer pressures
- The summer has felt like it is passing you by and you want to make sure you can make the most before the rain starts again.
- This workshop is also a great "self-care" session, especially for those who have a hard time squeezing self-care in.
YOU WILL WALK AWAY WITH
• Your actionable and personalized definition of self-care and summer success
(tailored, self-definitions increase the likelihood that your brain will be motivated to follow through on plans and ideas)
• A list of values-aligned summer activities that fit your schedule and life
• Time management and goal tools that you can use throughout the year
• A calm, energizing feeling that you can have the summer you want.
P.S. Did you hear about Club Eleven?