I always find this time of year funny. The days are longer, the sun is shining and we typically feel pretty good. So why is it that at the time of year when we are supposed to be reveling in days spent at the beach and evenings relaxing on a patio that my clients have been coming in feeling more anxious, less connected and in many ways dreading what most of us consider the best time of year?
The truth is, the time of year when what we need to be doing is slowing our pace, breaking out of our usual routine and giving ourselves time to relax and take care of ourselves, many of us end up over scheduling ourselves in hopes of fitting everything in. Time off ends up being busier then our typical work week and weekends are booked solid until the middle of September.
In my office I hear “but it’s all fun stuff Kaela, I feel like I shouldn’t be dreading it so much.” The truth is, even if it is fun stuff, being booked back to back and not using this time to actually slow down can have a really negative affect on your overall sense of well being. Fun events feels like obligations and things that would typically excite you can leave you feeling drained and exhausted
One of my biggest topics over these past few weeks in my counselling sessions has been to get my clients to practice saying NO. To begin with it usually creates a lot of anxiety. Not only because it is a challenge but also because a part of them actually wants to partake in all the summer festivities and doesn’t want to miss out. Once it happens though these same people report feeling more in control of their lives and also less overwhelmed. Balance becomes restored even just by them deciding to take one full day or evening off per week where they unplug from their phones and they just do them. For some this is having an easy night in where they sit and read a book on their back deck. For others is curling up under the covers and watching their favorite show and going to bed early.
Whatever it is, I encourage you to take yourself seriously this summer and start saying No to others so you can start saying Yes to yourself and your own needs.
Hope you had a wonderful July Long!