I cannot believe we’re saying hello to August already. It has been a very glorious summer here in London – the heat has been intense at times, the colours super saturated, and the smiles on people more apparent.
Summer in Chinese medicine is a time for blossoming and harnessing, taking from nature through our environment and food, to build a strong foundation for the winter months ahead. Usually with the British summer this is very much a theory rather than actual practice, but this year I have been very satisfied indeed.
August marks a down time psychologically – even parliament takes a break. Whether you’re going away or have been on holiday already, take some time to do these three things during this “quiet” season. I find it helps to reset and restore the mind which is exactly what we need when the city springs back to life in autumn.
1. Have a tech detox. Technology is all around us, there’s even wifi on the tube nowadays. I admit I do rely on my smartphone quite a bit, brethren checking my emails and reading the newspaper. But how much news do I really need to consume in a single day?
It’s hard if your job involves being connected for long hours but try to switch off on a weekend where people have to reach you through good old fashioned text messages or phone call. My summer tradition is to spend five days by the beach completely tuned in to the world around me. The only technology we have involves the radio with a built in CD player.
2. Treat yourself. I think summer is a wonderful time to treat yourself (or others) to something small and unexpected. What can feel more decadent than going into a gelateria and getting just a single bite-size ice cream macaron? I popped into a card shop on the weekend and got my little girl a helium balloon for no special occasion other than it was a lovely day. The smile and irrepressible giggle she had was delightful.
3. Walk. Walk a different route on your commute or take in a different part of town entirely. The light at this time of year is just right whether it’s early morning, afternoon or dusk. I love how St Paul’s looks from the South Bank and going over the bridge on the train home overlooking Tower Bridge after a long stroll makes it feel like the world belongs to you.
Try it and fall in love with your surroundings again. Being aware of what’s around you makes it easier to be aware of yourself.
Image: Flickr/ Pedro Fernandes
You might also like:
- Take care of the little things
- August bank holiday: Healthy ways to make the most of it
- Wellness tips for August