Now that summer is here, many of us are having a little more time to slow down, take off from the regular routine, and give ourselves the gift of enjoying the outdoors and a bit of sunshine. The world of deadlines and demands becomes a little more forgiving, as work and school schedules lighten up a bit and many of our colleagues are off on vacation. We're finding the time to hang out more with friends and family, go to the shore or camping, or just stay home and experiment with new recipes on the grill.
The reason I love summer so much is that it really allows me to connect with nature in a much deeper way.
The winter months keep me inside so much that as soon as it's warm I love to get out and discover new areas where I can completely immerse myself with the surroundings of nature. Perhaps your thing is hiking, camping, or water skiing, but for me, it’s lying on the beach, sinking into the sand and lolling off to the sound of the ocean waves.There's something about the rhythm and flow – the back and forth, back and forth. Together with a quiet breeze, the sounds and smells of the sea allow my mind to escape into a deep rest. The planning of events is gone, sorting out what's going on that week is of no consequence, and my mind can quiet and wander for a long period that it seldom has time to indulge in.
Have you experienced this? When resting in nature and its peacefulness, your mind clears, lifts up and is open to receiving new ideas. It's when the highest of thoughts can come to you. If you have issues you’ve been trying to resolve, do you know that the best solutions arrive when you’re not ‘trying’? Even though our minds can be really effective in solving problems for the immediate tasks we face every day, when it comes to finding solutions to life’s bigger questions, the normal busy mind can cause the best course of action or direction to take to completely elude us. The answers just don’t come so easily to the preoccupied mind.
All of us are striving to attain certain accomplishments in our lives. Whether it be family or relationships, big dreams like a new project or endeavor professionally, are we able to hear our own inner guidance on how to arrive at our goals more smoothly and easily? Your own perfect, higher guidance is always trying to reach you. Even if you’re very adept at listening to and acting upon your intuition throughout the day, when it comes time for decisions around the larger picture of your life, hearing higher guidance is a practice that needs to be cultivated.
During these summer months, make an extra effort to schedule some downtime. Try practicing this emptying of your mind for long periods while we are still in these summer months. Soon enough it will be fall again, and all the hustle and bustle of busyness will be upon us again. If you can, get out in nature and away from it all. The soothing sounds of birds and insects, and moving water will immediately relax you and ease the incessant stream of thoughts that are always running through your mind. The harmonious colors around you will stretch your imagination, and inspire you to a grander vision for your life. The rich smells of growth can return you to childhood, when you were first discovering the wildness and complexity that all of nature had to offer you then.
It can be very tempting in the summer months to fill your schedule with one social activity after another, and end up with every weekend planned. But by pausing to look at your agenda before booking every chunk of time, and making a conscious decision to reserve at least one day a week for no plans at all is a great gift to yourself. A decision like this could be one of the most important you make this summer. By taking time to breathe, relax and to quiet your mind, you’ll never know what new inspirations can come to you. You'll create the possibility for direct positive affect on the outcomes of your larger life picture for the rest of this year.
Are you taking time to breathe this summer? Feel free to leave me your comments.