My Favorite Summer Self Care Tips

It is official! Summer 2019 has arrived in the Northern Hemisphere. We celebrated the beautiful summer solstice last week and now we welcome in summer.

Of course here in the Midwest where I live, we are still a literally bogged down with rain, storms and flooding. While I don’t look forward to upper 90’s with humidity of 95%, honestly we can use a little drying out, so I welcome the hot sun for a while.

In honor of summer officially kicking off, I wanted to share some of my favorite summer self care tips!

1. Get outside! It is so important to get outside and let yourself be bathed in what Mother Nature has to offer in her lush summer bounty. No matter where you live, or the season, she has something special to offer us. I am a huge proponent of being out in Mother Nature as a way to deeply nurture your body and soul. I always feel better when I can get outside even if it is just to stand on my porch and take a few breaths.

Plan something outside every day. Take a walk in a nearby park you haven’t explored yet, plan a camping, hiking or canoeing trip where you can linger a bit in nature. Sit on your patio or porch and sip a cool drink and watch the sunset.

There are so many ways to enjoy Mother Nature and her healing energy. It is healing because the vibrational frequency of the earth is closely matched to that of our body and that creates great resonance…our bodies LOVE it. It’s like hanging out with your bestie! Not to mention just the beautiful sites, sounds and smells she provides. It really is soothing to our Soul!

2. Put your bare feet on the earth. This dovetails with number 1. When you are out there…take your shoes off and get those bare feet on the earth! Remember how as a kid we LOVED to be barefoot? Well just go back there for a few minutes and let yourself feel how cool, solid and yummy it feels to have your feel bare to the earth. Maybe even be brave and dig your toes in a bit (you can wash your feet later!).

Placing your bare feet (or heck your whole body!) on the ground helps you directly connect in with the earth and her vibration. It reminds me of the skin to skin connection we encourage mommy’s and baby’s to do. Its nurturing and fills us up in a way words really can’t describe. We do call her Mother Earth after all…so maybe its time we get some “skin to skin” connection with our earth mama!

3. Essential oils are your summer time friend. Well truthfully they are your year round friend…but in summertime they really come through for us. While being outside affords us so many benefits and pleasure…it also has its not so fun side. Bugs, burns, bites….Oh my! So this year take care of yourself more naturally. I love using Terra Shield spray to help keep the pests away. When I do get a bite, I use Lavender oil right on the bite and the itch and swelling are on their way out! I also love to add lavender to my lotion or a spray bottle with water to mist on my skin if I get a bit too much sun. Here is a little article you might want to read on being safe from bugs naturally.

I also love adding citrus oils to my water for a refreshing, cleansing and healthy addition to my body. It seems to brighten the afternoon to add a little tangerine to a glass of water! Just a little safety note on citrus oils…they are photo sensitive, so don’t use them topically when you are going to be out in the sun.

4. Get your hands in the dirt. Getting our hands in the dirt and cultivating plants is one of the easiest ways for me to unwind and slow down a bit. I don’t have a big garden, but every year I plant several planters of my favorite perennials, a few herbs and maybe a few veggies. It’s one of my favorite late spring weekend activities. Going to the nursery and picking out plants, working the dirt into the pots and planting the small little tendrils and watering them with care. Watching as the days and weeks go on as they grow and blossom and make everything around them brighter and a little happier! Gardening on any level provides another way we connect with something bigger than us…with this greater universal life force energy that connects us with EVERY THING and EVERY ONE. You don’t have to go big…just a pot with a plant or two that brings you joy and adds some of Mother Nature’s beauty close to home.

5. Take it easy. Are you singing? Ha Ha! As soon as I typed that…I went straight to that Eagles tune in my mind. So funny how things like that are so indelible in our brains! Back to my point… Yes take it a little easy this summer. Allow some lazy days or afternoons. Give yourself some space to let the wonder of summer have its way with you. The world is lush this time of year…allow time and space to feel this fullness, the blossoming and blooming that occurs with lots of sunlight and warmth. Find something you can take off your to-do list and just allow a little more space and ease.

6. Have some fun. Remember when we were kids how summer was for fun? It’s actually summers mantra I think! Songs are written about it, advertising is geared to it, yet somehow once we become adults we often forget to have fun, to be playful and maybe even a bit silly. As kids we could find fun anywhere with the most simplest of surroundings. Running through a hose, catching lightening bugs, playing tag, making bubbles, going for a swim, or just giggling with our best friend over an ice cream. Now it seems the only time we find time for fun is on a scheduled vacation. Often even those are less fun than we would like! So I encourage you to find your fun this summer in small, every day ways. Go run through that hose with your kids or grandkids, go outside and be marvelled by the lightening bugs, giggle over an ice cream (it can be dairy free if that its what your body likes!) with someone you love,. Be silly and playful. Let fun be your summer mantra again!

Here’s to Summer Fun!

Happy Summer Solstice!

Happy Summer Solstice!

We have reached that auspicious day of Summer Solstice, the longest day of the year...the most light coming through.

For centuries cultures have marked this day and many have built structures honoring and celebrating the gifts provided by the strength and light of the Sun. Think Stonehenge.

Our western, modern world mostly moves right on past this day without much attention. Even though as a modern culture we tend to just go about our business on this day, it does not mean that their is not a potency and significance to the energy of the day.

The Summer Solstice has a fiery energy. It is full of light and life force energy. It not only represents the sun itself and its longest day, it also celebrates the light we are...and our full potential as we awaken more and more to our true essence.

A big piece to living more aware and stepping more deeply into Soulful Self Care is making more connection with nature and her rhythms...including those of our brightest star and the rest of the cosmos!

So today we celebrate the sun! The sun in the sky and the sun within us. The light and all it brings us.

Here are some practices that might help you connect, even just for a few minutes, with awareness of the energies of this powerful day.

1. Stand barefoot on Mother Earth. Take your shoes off, stand barefoot on the earth and just let yourself connect to her. Feel the grounded-ness (ha...I think I just made that up, at least according to spellcheck!) as you connect to the earth and then look up! Let the sun (if it is out) shine on your face. Take it in allowing the physical and the energetic light absorb into you.

2. Breathe in the Sun. While you are outside, barefoot connecting to nature...take a deep, deep belly breath itaking in the sun's warmth and light as your breathe. Allow your self to full take in the pleasure of the sunlight.

3. Set an Intention. Take a few moments today to set an intention for what it is you want to call in or expand in your life. Allow this power of the sun to be felt as you declare for yourself what it is you want to create more of in your life.

4. Add a little Fire. Many cultures celebrate the solstice with a fire ceremony. You can do the same! Just light a candle or if you have a outdoor fire pit, get it going tonight. Perhaps enjoy it in solitude as you allow yourself to bask in the energies of the day and reflect on your year to date. OR...make it a gathering with those you love as you come together to honor the sun, the light, the abundance that comes in summer as the sun shines its light to nourish nature.

5. Sun Salutations. Take a few Sun Salutations to honor the sun through conscious movement of your body. Sun Salutations create heat or "tapas" in our body. The circular pattern of the series brings us into a movement meditation. As we build the heat in our body we burn away the unnecessary and allow more of the new to come in. Here is a link to learn how to do a sun salutation.

Suggested essential oil to enhance the connection with the sun today...Wild Orange. It just smells like sunshine!

I hope you enjoy this amazing, powerful day and get a chance to allow yourself to become present to the moment and to be in tune with nature and the cosmos.

Blessings to you!