If there’s one season that has the power to make us happy, it’s definitely Summer. With long, sunny days and warm balmy evenings, Summer is the best time of year to inspire us to get outdoors, relax, and have fun. From traveling and doing projects we love to spending time with friends and family, here are 10 things to do this Summer to boost your happiness.
Host a Beach Bonfire
Getting together with your best pals to roast s’mores over a bonfire is one of the joys of Summer. Not only is it a fun way to re-connect with your favorite people, it also reminds us of our childhoods, which is a way to bring out our inner kid’s sense of wonder.
Take a Walk in Nature
Since the weather is ideal for nature hikes and outdoor walks, lace up your sneakers and head outside. Spending quality time in the beauty of nature helps you clear your mind, get centered emotionally and enjoy the simple things in life. Turn your cell phone on airplane mode (so you’re not distracted by texts and social media), make it a priority each day to spend at least 20-minutes relaxing and unwinding in nature. You’ll find that you feel calmer, happier, and more fulfilled after using this time wisely.
Do DIY Craft Projects
Whether you’d love to learn how to make a succulent terrarium or lavender essential oils, spending time doing DIY craft projects this Summer is a great way to learn something new and boost your happiness. Places like Anthropologie (nationally), and Carmel Valley Ranch, Earthbound Farms, and the Carmel Valley Mercantile (in our local area) regularly host DIY craft days, enabling attendees the chance to learn first-hand how to do these projects.
Do a Healthy Detox
To rev your metabolism, eliminate toxins that are making you feel sluggish, and kick your body into high-gear, a healthy detox (for a few days) can make you feel refreshed and lighter. As we move into Summer months, fresh fruits become more readily available. So why not skip the sugary pancakes in the morning and drink a fiber-full fruit smoothie instead? You can also substitute other types of foods throughout the day (even if you’re not into the idea of a liquid diet), by opting for green salads, antioxidant-rich vegetables, and healthy protein sources (such as almonds). After a few days of changing your diet, you’ll start to feel lighter, have a flatter tummy, and will most likely be motivated to continue eating healthier.
Do Gardening & Home Improvement Projects
With all the sunny weather, it’s the perfect excuse to get into your garden and spruce things up around your home. Whether you love to plant colorful annuals or just want to make your deck space more inviting and pretty, Summer is a great time to do gardening and home improvement projects. Not only will you feel satiated once these to-do lists have been checked off, you’ll also feel happy knowing that you’ve created a tranquil and relaxing space to enjoy throughout the season.
Take a New Fitness Class
Ever felt like you were stuck in a rut with your workout? We all have at some point or another! To renew your sense of enthusiasm toward exercise, often the best thing to do is to sign-up for a new fitness class. Whether you’ve always been curious about Reformer Pilates, Barre, or Yoga, or you’re more into the idea of working one-on-one with a trainer, jumping into a new fitness program not only stimulates the mind and keeps you energized, it also helps to train your muscles in new and different ways.
Sometimes the best things in life are (nearly) free. That’s why camping is always a fun and affordable way to go on vacation without breaking the bank. Plus, it’s an opportunity to enjoy the peace and quietude that being in nature can provide. Pack your tent, the basic essentials, and round-up your favorite friends and family to head to a nearby mountain, lake or river. Instead of being glued to your laptop or cell phone all weekend, bring some board games, books, and even some music to pass the time.
Rent a Vacation Home
While it’s always fun to be pampered at a luxurious hotel, there’s something relaxing and enjoyable about renting a vacation home with your besties. It reminds us of those fun-filled sleepovers we had as kids – staying up into the late hours of the night gabbing with our gal pals about boys, beauty, and life. Plus, it’s often more affordable to rent a home with other people rather than opting for individual hotel rooms. So you’ll not only be happier, your bank account will also get a break.
Spend time near water
Whether you live within driving distance to the beach, a lake, or even a river, spending time near water always has the power to reinvigorate and refresh you. In a Condé Nast Traveler article about the correlation between happiness and spending time near water, they reported that “More recent studies—including those out of a UK-based project called Blue Gym—have found that people who live near the coasts are generally healthier and happier. Other studies find that when shown photographs of natural green spaces, people’s stress levels drop, but the more blue spaces in the photos, the more people prefer them.”
Last, but certainly not least, when you travel abroad you expand your horizons, learn about new cultures, and experience the incredibly rich history of the world. Summer is an ideal time to travel to many places, including Europe, Canada, and even Alaska since the weather is good. Whether you’ve always dreamed of seeing the Ruins, drinking wine in the French countryside, or eating pasta in Italy, don’t wait another minute to book that trip. Seize the day and use your time this Summer to boost your happiness.