With school out, vacations sweeping by, and summer activities getting fully underway, the summer season can start to feel a little frenzied at times. Not to worry though – if you notice that you’re starting to get carried away in the summer busy-ness, have a seat, give yourself a moment, and finish reading this article. I’ll give you some ideas for how to get creative and slow things back down a little so that you have some breathing room and can actually enjoy this summer season.
Summer can be the perfect time to practice putting a pause on whatever life’s throwing at you and do something for yourself. This could be as simple as setting a timer for 5 minutes and doing some deep breathing while the kids are in swim practice or writing down a quick list of 10 things that bring a smile to your face while you enjoy your morning coffee. If you have a little more time to give yourself, though, now is an excellent time to explore some of the creative things you’ve wondered about, pinned on your Pinterest page, bookmarked in that library craft book, or liked on Facebook. Give yourself permission and space to try something outside of your comfort zone. It doesn’t have to feel too risky, but allow yourself to experiment, to make “mistakes,” and to even to make a mess.
When we allow ourselves time and space to honor those creative sparks we have, we give ourselves an opportunity for growth. Whether it’s learning you really do have a knack at baking, or even if it’s learning that crochet is definitely not your cup of tea, you can rest well knowing that you did something you hadn’t done before. You now know more about yourself and what you like or don’t like; what relaxes you or frustrates you. This can give you the knowledge and confidence you need to take on that next creative idea!
Summer is also the magical time of garage sale-ing, so this can be a great time to find some really good bargains on art or crafting supplies. The art stores
in town also offer weekly coupons to pick up some supplies that are more on track with your budget. The library offers several art kits that you can check out and explore that are totally free of cost!
Giving yourself time and space to be creative can be just the thing you need to help relieve some stress, be in the moment, and find new hobbies or things that make you feel good about yourself. Don’t be afraid to invite the kids either! They can be good models at how to disregard the outcome and just be fully present in the moment of creating.
July 24th is International Self-Care Day so mark that day on your calendars or set a reminder on your smart phone. Let this month be your starting point of setting aside a few moments or an hour to let yourself be… relaxed, creative, confident.
–Jennifer McRavin, MS ATR
Valeo Behavioral Health Care
400 SW Oakley
Topeka, KS 66606
24 Hour Crisis Line
National Suicide Prevention Life Line
Shawnee County Suicide Prevention Coalition
Family Service and Guidance Center (18 and under)
325 SW Frazier
Topeka, KS 66606
24 Hour Crisis Number
Healing after Loss to Suicide Group (HeALS)
Sandy Reams – Group Facilitator
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