Summer is loading, ladies, and I hope our journey of healing has ushered in a season of fun! I’m talking sundresses swaying, summer hair whippin' in the wind (unless you’re a baldie like me, then it’s time to turn the color up a notch), or put a new stamp on your passport. You get my drift. It’s time to be a hot, healed woman with plans to get even hotter. And I’m not talking expensive plans either. There’s so many different things to do to celebrate yourself. If nothing else, we all owe it to ourselves to make up for the lackluster summer we experienced last year. I don't need to revisit the life we lived in 2020 for you to know where I'm coming from.
One thing is for certain, in order to have a great time, we have to feel good internally. Reality is, not everyone is at their best going into this season. While summer is the time to shine for many, that's not the case for all. We’ll never be 100% positive all the time, but the object is to live life with way more optimism than not. An 85% positive mindset versus 15% negativity is a winning score. What is not good is when we are predominately negative. That’s when depression seeps in and can often take over.
If this is your circumstance, or that of someone close to you, the question becomes what is holding you back from enjoying your life? I can place a sure bet that the answer is you. Even if you're not the catalyst or root of your unhappiness, you hold the key to changing it. Just remember that change entails making decisions that require autonomic thinking. Eliminate anything that brings out the worst in you.
Recently, we all witnessed a pointed example of this. Naomi Osaka jumpstarted the summer with a self-care example that the whole world saw by withdrawing from Wimbledon and the French Open. To see such a young woman put her mental health before her ambition was inspiring. Lil' sis cared less about the inevitable judgment of an awaiting world. She bossed up and chose healing. Period.
As I mentioned, I want to see everyone out enjoying the sunset, whether it’s from your patio, a car ride, or the shores of Belize. So, I’ve created a list of ideas to revitalize you during these summer months. All of them are tested and proven to help by yours truly. Y’all know my motto, I wouldn't tell you to do something that I myself haven’t done. These are sure ways to make yourself feel better from the inside out, and ultimately uplift your spirits for a summer enjoyed.
Fill up on fresh foods: Coming from a southern chick with curves, I’ll be the first to tell you I love my comfort foods. Nothing makes me happier than sitting in front of a pot roast with mashed potatoes, gravy and cornbread. But, baby when the weather heats up it’s time to head to Farmers Market and pick some fresh peaches and crisp apples. It’s amazing how vibrant you can feel simply by incorporating a leafy summer salad into your daily meal plan. Your skin will have a natural glow, and your digestive system will thank you for the lighter days if you know what I mean. Oh and don't fret, I always pour myself a chilled cucumber martini to wash it all done. Cheers!
Spend time with people who make you smile: Now, ladies I'm not talking about that person who makes you smile one minute and cry the next. No, not that one. I mean a genuine person who you can be yourself around. Someone who doesn’t judge you for your idiosyncrasies, but instead makes you comfortable to be even more of your quirky self. Summertime is when mother nature has revived everything and brought it back to life in its lush form. Don’t allow yourself to get left out. Find your person/people and live!
Soak up some sun: Can you believe that last year I had to start getting Vitamin D shots from a lack of sun? Yes, chile, Covid-19 had done drained my body of much needed nutrients. I was sluggish, had dizzy spells, never felt rested, and my complexion was dull. In all my years of living, I hadn’t experienced that, but you live and you damn sure learn. As a Texas native, we try to stay far away from the sun, or hell we just might melt. But truthfully, ladies, even if it’s an early morning walk before the sun is at its peak, soak up a little vitamin D this summer (after you moisturize, of course). It is necessary, take it from me.
Plan at least one staycation: Stated as plain as I can put it, staycations will add joy to your summer! "But I need to vacay out of the state”, you may be thinking. And I’d suggest you do that as well. But on a simpler level, you can plan staycations on a whim, no advance planning needed. Let's say you're feeling down, or had a stressful work week. You can simply do this: Friday when you get in your car and pull away from that soul-sucking workplace, jump on your phone and book a nice suite in your city. If you can, schedule a massage at the hotel spa, and when you check in pop a bottle and order room service. By the time you're ready for glass number two, your mind will have transcended your actual setting. My husband and I do this quite often during the summer months, and believe me the change of scenery elevates the vibe in every way.
I believe wholeheartedly that God gave us the change of seasons to keep our spirit in a constant state of progression. Just as the environment changes according to the seasons, so does our moods. It is our choice whether we embrace the beautiful life we have, or spend our days in limbo between living and existing. June 2oth is around the corner, the first day of summer. Make it a season worth your while, beauties!