Summer tips for a better well-being
When was the last time you took an afternoon nap? And while tasting blueberries, did you notice all the nuances of their flavour? Did you get excited by their dark full colour? It may sound like details but research and anecdotal evidence suggest that these details positively influence your mental health and focus, decrease stress and bring you happiness.
The tips were written by Olga Zimmermann, an organisational psychologist, coach and facilitator. Olga helps companies to introduce well-being into their work culture so that employees feel well and thus are more efficient and loyal to their employer.
Infodetox in nature
Summer is an ideal time to relax and reconnect with nature. Moreover, one of the latest studies shows that just 20 minutes spent in nature significantly decreases stress hormone cortisol. Adding a simple mindfulness practice to your walk can bring many positive effects on your physical and mental health.
Try shinrin yoku - originally from Japan, now wildly known as "forest bath". Here's how: For 20 minutes, switch off your smartphone and forget about taking pictures, too.
Focus on your 5 senses:
- What do you hear? Listen to the birds' chirping, whispering of the leaves, water gurgling…
- What do you smell? Breath in the forest air. What scents can you recognize?
- What do you see? With a curiosity of a child, observe the life of a forest. Perhaps you'll find a busy anthill. Or you'll notice a woodpecker knocking on the tree. Or simply watch the sun rays glistening between the leaves.
- What do you feel with your hands? Touch bark of the tree, moss or stone. What structure and temperature do you feel?
- What do you taste? Open your mouth and taste what forest air tastes like. Try to find strawberries or blueberries and taste them as if you never tasted them before.
Take a nap
In comparison to south European countries, an afternoon nap is not very common in our culture. However, we recommend you to take one anytime you have a chance. Research shows that a short nap during a day brings you many benefits: improves attention, memory and creativity, decreases stress, contributes to a better perception, stamina, motor skills and accuracy, improves your sex life, helps to decrease weight, lowers the risk of a heart attack or lifts your mood.
Moreover, when we sleep our brain processes new information. Thus a short break is efficient prevention of burnout syndrome. If you can, save some time for the afternoon nap. Your mental health will thank you.
Fulfill your adventurous dream
How long have you been dreaming of parachuting, white water rafting or hiking all the way to Santiago de Compostela? What adventurous dream do you keep postponing? This Summer, make one of such dreams come true.
Researchers claim that experience gained during adventurous activities can increase our personal effectiveness, mindfulness and subjectively felt well-being. It also decreases a feeling of time pressure, mental stress and contributes to better mental health. Moreover, learning new things stretches our comfort zone and contributes to cultivating a growth mindset. And as professor Carol Dweck claims, success can't be achieved without a growth mindset.
Read a good well-being book
Sometimes, we can find inspiration in other people's ideas. This Summer, spend some time reading a book that brings you a good mood and supports your well-being.
Here's a couple of good books you may want to read:
- Brene Brown: Daring Greatly
- Don Miguel Ruiz: Four Agreements
- Meik Wiking: The Little Book of Hygge: The Danish Way to Live Well
- Haemin Sunim: The Things You Can Only See When You Slow Down
Are you interested in more tips on how to take care of your well-being this summer? You can read them every other week on our blog.
You can be looking forward to the following topics:
- How to work with your own energy during summer (Martina Wojtylova Opava)
- Why summer is a perfect time to cleanse our minds (Milan Pavlíček)
- Why to think about the corporate culture at the end of the summer (Sandra Fridrichová)
Authors: Olga Zimmermann, Lenka Mydlová