For many people, summer can be a time to relax, kick your feet back, and enjoy the time away from work and responsibilities. However, with more people working from home, work schedules have become increasingly more demanding. Even as the world returns to what was, the work climate is still changing. If it’s getting back to in person work or still working from home both have their challenges. Summer is also a time to focus on those projects that we pushed off during the winter. There are a variety of new activities that require our time, energy, and attention such as outdoor responsibilities, child care, summer camp…and yes, vacation too. As we find ourselves faced busy summer schedules here are some tips to help in effectively managing summer stress.
1. Prioritize projects
Having a laundry list of responsibilities and projects to complete over the summer is definitely stress inducing! Schedule time to sit down and determine what is most pressing, what can be addressed in time, and what could potentially be put off a little longer.
2. Keep yourself healthy and your environment clean
We may feel the urge to address all of our summer goals right away and as quickly as possible. However, this can lead to burn out, exhaustion, and increase our stress levels. Take time to care for yourself. Stick to healthy sleeping habits, eat food that nourishes you, engage in exercise, and keep your environment clean. All of these activities have been shown to reduce stress levels.
3. Manage your schedule and take time to address important responsibilities
Fitting new projects, activities, and things to do into our schedules can seem like a daunting task during the summer. Review what your current schedule looks like: What are the most pressing responsibilities you need to attend to ie. work or taking care of children? Then, explore what time is available, if these responsibilities can be shifted, and when you can schedule time to take care of yourself. Being organized is another way we can reduce our stress levels.
4. Take time to socialize
The past year has been a nightmare regarding connecting with those we care about, if it be our friends, extended family, or even partners. As the world transitions to a new normal, reach out to those you care about. Make time to spend with them, if it be a dinner, coffee date, or even zoom call. Seeing people we care about can help us to feel happier thus reducing our stress levels.
5. Take time to relax
It can be hard to schedule time for ourselves. Nonetheless, doing something for ourselves is so important in preventing burnout, reducing stress levels, and managing our mental health. You may not be able to take off of work to go on vacation, but schedule some time to relax or do something that makes you happy at least once a day.
Managing summer stress can be difficult especially when we are transitioning out of a pandemic. These simple steps are a great base for how we can stay organized, healthy, and happy during the summer months. Most importantly, we need to forgive ourselves when we aren’t able to get to everything in our packed schedules. Taking a nonjudgmental approach to how we tackle some of the challenges ahead of us allows us to prioritize important aspects that not only help us to be productive, but also preserve our physical and mental health.
If you find that managing stress has become too much to handle, please visit our website and make an appointment at https://qhealthonline.com. We have clinicians ready to meet and discuss whatever needs you may be experiencing.