The thought of summer can fill us with a mixture of emotions.
Finally, no school for six weeks; it’s the freedom you’ve been longing all year for! But it’s also a time where some of us struggle with the lack of routine, or loneliness when our friends are away on family holidays, or the strange feeling of having no worries about homework or revision. These things can cause us to feel slightly lost, low or sometimes even worse.
It can feel confusing if you feel like this because summer is meant to be great right? And with so much time over the summer to think, it can cause a lot of unwanted emotions to bubble at times.
You’re not alone if you feel like this. Summer can be a tough time. So I have put my mind to the test and thought of five things you could do in the summer to look after your mental health. Grab a hold of this summer and the opportunities it presents, instead of letting summer get a hold of you.
1. Create a routine
If you’re feeling a little lost in the summer, creating your own routine can really help. You could pick up a new hobby or use the opportunity to regularly do something you’ve always wanted to. It may not be bright, sunny or hot everyday here in the UK but there’s always something you can do! You could use the summer to brush up on your swimming, or learn a new sport. Simpler yet, you could buy a sketch book and sit in a park and practise your drawing.
One thing I’ve got involved in this summer is volunteering. There’s all types of volunteering, such as helping at local events or for a charity. I’m sure there’s something that will suit what you’re interested in!
Volunteering is great because you don’t have to commit to it as much as you would a job, but it also allows you to do something for the good of others, which can also feel very rewarding. It’s also a good way to keep busy, and keep your mind distracted.
The summer is a good opportunity to connect with old friends, friends from primary school or a school you might have just left. If you are finding it difficult to leave the house, you could connect with people in other ways. You could send a message, write a letter or give them a call.
4. Small but significant changes
If the activities above like volunteering, meeting with friends or trying a new hobby are not things you feel able to do, you could make little but significant changes to your routine. If you are able to, you could eat outside, be in the fresh air, or listen to some music.
5. Look after yourself
The most important thing to do is to pay attention to yourself, don’t ignore your feelings if you feel bad, talk to someone and tell them how you’re feeling. Remember to rest if you start to feel burnt out. Make the most of self-care resources and remember that you’re never alone.