5 summer-specific ways to practice self-care this break

Jessica Khauv/Staff

While the summertime used to symbolize freedom from worry, it’s easy to become busy or stressed during the warmer months. Spring semester may be over, but many students choose to work, intern or take summer classes, which leads to neglecting self-care during our prime time to embrace it. Mentally and emotionally recovering from the academic year is important and may improve your well-being as you face the summer ahead. Whether you’re one of the lucky ones with a chill break or you’re incredibly busy, here are five ways you can practice self-care as the summer begins.

Do some physical activity outside.

From long walks on the beach to difficult hikes, taking your workouts outside is a great option to kick off your summer self-care routine. Now that the weather is warmer, motivating yourself to be physically active will be a lot easier, and you have a lot more options. You can grab a group of friends for a quick game of volleyball or basketball, walk your dog a few times a week or even try one of those goat yoga classes you keep hearing about online. Just make sure to wear plenty of sunscreen.

Take a break from technology.

During the academic year, computers and other forms of technology are necessary to complete assignments, network and organize your life. With the stress of the spring semester gone, now is a great time to unplug from the online world. Try limiting your access to your laptop and phone one hour before you plan to go to sleep. Or if you’re daring enough and have a free schedule, challenge yourself to go one day without using any form of modern technology. Regardless of your approach, taking a break from electronics can be a great mental break to start off the summer.

Plan a day-cation.

Taking a personal day to go somewhere new and exciting is always a great way to practice self-care, especially if you have a busier summer schedule. If you live in California, there are tons of options — you could visit a new beach, adventure through big cities such as Los Angeles and San Francisco or see old friends who are still in school — hey, someone’s gotta check out the competition at UCLA, right? However, if you don’t have much time or access to any of those options, try to visit a local place you’ve never been before. Who knows? Maybe your tiny, old town will surprise you.

Eat some fresh fruit.

Melons, berries, citrus, oh my! There are tons of fruits in season right now just waiting for your enjoyment. Not only are they great items to add sweetness to your meals, but they also provide lots of nutrients that keep you healthy and energized during the summer. If you’re trying to get that summer body last minute (or if you’ve somehow achieved said summer body and are trying to maintain it), summer’s fresh fruits are a great option for you. Plus, who doesn’t love watermelon on a hot, sunny day?

Enjoy some ice cream.

Let’s be honest —  who actually cares about having a summer body? One of the best ways to enjoy summer is by having treats from time to time, and no treat is more iconic than ice cream! Whether you’re a lactose lover or a strict vegan, there are many options available. Most supermarkets have both dairy-free and regular ice cream pints. Thankfully, more and more ice cream shops are offering sorbets or alternative milk options. Or you could even make your own ice cream! So grab your friends or family and get your dessert on!

With the added free time and warmer weather, summer is a great time to reflect and re-evaluate your self-care needs. Use these first few weeks of break to practice self-care and prepare for whatever adventures lie ahead of you!

Contact Erin Haar at [email protected].