Summer is officially here! Yeah! What are your intentions to make this your best summer yet? Now is the perfect time to get outside and make some great memories! Summer is the time to:
The longer days and sunny weather naturally shift our perspective to be more relaxed, allowing us to leave work a little earlier to have fun and play! To get your ideas flowing I thought I'd share with you a few of my intentions for this summer. These aren’t huge “bucket list” items, rather they are just simple pleasures that are easy to incorporate into my daily life and will set the stage to make some beautiful memories this summer. I hope they inspire you to set a few summer goals of your own!
My Summer Intentions
#1 - Meditate Outside. I intend to move my morning meditations to my backyard. One of my favorite places to meditate is outside. It is a natural setting to induce calmness. I get into that Zen state instantly when I feel the soft breeze on my skin and hear the chirping of the birds. My favorite meditation technique I like to use while outdoors is what I like to call “open listening.” I carve out the first 5 minutes of my meditation to focus on sounds and practice listening to them, but not judging them. Instead I just allow the sounds to arise and then dissolve. It gives my mind a task to keep it from wandering to random thoughts. To help with the timing I use the Insight Timer app (you can download this app to your phone). It’s so easy to use! I set it up so that there are 3 gong sounds during my 20 minute mediation practice: One at the beginning of the practice, one 5 minutes into the practice and one at the end of the practice. During the first 5 minutes of the meditation I use the open listening technique. For the last 15 minutes I redirect my focus from sounds to my breath and drift deeper into the meditation---most of the time anyway! You can modify the timing during your mediation to fit the timing that works for you. Also, you can change the gong sound to many other different sounds (bells, blocks, etc.) of your preference.
# 2 - Enjoy Sunsets. I intend to watch more sunsets on the beach. My husband and I love having picnic dinners on the beach too! So we will take advantage of day light savings time and make this a weekly event throughout the summer. Whether you have access to the ocean, a lake, a river or the mountains, get out in nature and enjoy the sunsets!
#3 - Explore different styles of yoga. I want to move differently and experience new ways to express myself through yoga. There are 4 different styles I’m interested in exploring: Aerial Yoga, SUP Yoga, Kundalini Yoga and Bikram Yoga. Aerial Yoga and SUP Yoga just seem fun---so I plan to try them with friends once or twice over the summer. However, Kundalini Yoga and Bikram Yoga are a bit more intense and I want to commit to practicing them for longer periods of time in order to reap the benefits of these modalities. I am currently practicing Bikram Yoga and intend to do it for one month, three times per week. I thought I’d start the summer with Bikram Yoga before the hotter months kick in. A little confession: I tried Bikram Yoga years ago and hated it! But….I just finished my first week and have really enjoyed it. Timing is everything, right? I’ll share with you my full experience once I complete my full month. Stay tuned!
#4 - Create nourishing meals for me, family and friends. I love cooking and experimenting with new recipes. Recently, I have been following Allison Wu (@allison_wu), a recipe developer and wellness blogger, on Instagram. What I like about her cooking is she also uses a lot of foods I have never heard of before, such as adaptogens, collagen peptides, tayberries and much more. Plus everything she makes (and posts) looks so beautiful AND healthy---look at the salad below!
I hope a few of my intentions inspire you to create some of your own memories this summer! Let’s make this the best summer yet! Namaste.