Summer's here, and there's memories to be made. We're able to decompress from the busy year we've had, relax at the beach or by the pool, and maybe even hang out with friends. Summer is also a time that can be used to find out new things about yourself that you never knew.
Although summer is a time for fun with friends, you shouldn't forget to check in with yourself.
Lately my social media feed has been filled with postings of my friends enjoying themselves and kicking off their 'Hot Girl Summers' of the year. I've been trying to get better at posting pictures recently rather than the occasional 4-month update.
While trying to keep up with friends and seeing what they're up to, I'm also keeping in touch and checking up on them to make sure they're doing alright at home or with potential summer classes. I'm starting to realize that just like I'm checking in with others, I also need to check up on myself to see how I'm doing during this sunny time.
Taking time for myself and spending less time with a lot of people turned out to be more liberating than I thought.
A couple of summers ago, I dedicated the time to just doing things that made me happy and found ways to manage my mental health. I spent less time with friends and on social media. I spent more time with myself. By doing this, I found out a lot about myself that I never knew like what little things make me happy and ways to keep my mental health in check.
I realized that I didn't need materialistic things to make me happy. I found that I could be happy on my own. This was such a powerful feeling that I never knew I needed, and I remember coming back to school for the fall semester with a better mindset and greater awareness of myself. I honestly felt like a new person, for lack of better phrasing. Reminiscing about that summer made me ask myself a question - how am I doing now?
Personal growth is different for everyone, but keep in mind that summer is more than just a filtered photo at the beach.
Thinking about this now, I might be trying to tell myself that maybe I need to take a break from others and shift my focus towards doing things that reshape me into the person I'm still becoming.
Obviously, the things I do to care for myself might be different from what others might do to care for themselves, but the time and effort still transcends. Summer is a time of freedom and a vacation away from the stresses we may have during the other eight months of the year. Although spending time with friends is great, spending time with yourself is just as important.
Take advantage of your summer and find things that spark your interest, discover new things about yourself, and see what other things make you happy.