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What time is it? Summertime!

Posted By Dottie Brown, Graduate Resident Director, Ohio University, Wednesday, May 23, 2018

 

What time is it? Summertime! It’s our vacation! Your first step in contributing to your mental health this summer is to watch a cheesy, yet classic, movie to get you in the summer spirit! (Only slightly joking, everyone can use a little music in their life, right?)

But seriously, some of you have already started your summer assignments, while some of you only recently closed your buildings. Either way, we are finally here! Students are gone, campus feels a little calmer, and you finally feel like you can breathe again. Summer is such a great time to catch up on yourself and your wellbeing. However, how many of you go into the first week of summer super motivated to travel the world, organize your entire office, and catch up on all the sleep you missed throughout the year all at the same time? I know I definitely do. I start aching for summer as soon as the magic of the first snowfall turns into brown slush. “I’ll organize my office this summer,” I tell myself. “I’ll take that trip once the students are gone,” I tell my friends. And the most common one, “I’ll start focusing on myself this summer when I have more free time.”  

I have all these goals floating through my head before the summer even starts, but then BOOM we start preparing for RA training and move-in. Wait, where did the summer go!? This happens way too often for me. I get to the end of the summer and it seems like I never even caught my breath from spring semester closing.  After asking friends for advice and some excessive Pinterest searching, I have developed a few expectations I want to follow this summer in order to achieve my goals and take care of my mental health. Whether you use these expectations, or develop your own, I encourage you to sit down and think about your summer. If you are already a few weeks in, it’s not too late! (Especially if you are already wondering where the time went the last two weeks, I know I sure am!)

  1. Make a List

    You can look at this like your summer bucket list or simply a list of things you want to accomplish this summer. Make your list in a way that you will see it and remember it. I too often make a list on a note in my phone and completely forget it is there. I plan to get some butcher block paper and hang it in my office. Check out the recent Trends article for some examples of mindfulness practices to add to your list to practice each week! This would be a great step in focusing on your mental health this summer. Take one-step further and actually plan when you want to do each item.

  2. It is ok to say no
    Before summer even started, I had already committed to a trip to Cleveland (3 hours), a wedding in Chicago (7 hours) and a trip to Illinois for a conference (8 hours). Now the in-laws and a group of friends are asking to join another trip. I get exhausted just looking at my calendar! Prioritize yourself this summer. Will going on that extra trip make you more tired than you already are? Would it be better for you to stay home and relax or complete something else on your list? It is ok to say no and do what is best for you! This is a great practice to learn. The summer is only a couple months, which isn’t always enough time to accomplish everything.

  3.  Reflect on the previous year
    Now that the students are gone and you have an empty (sometimes creepy) quiet building, try to reflect on the previous year. What did you learn that you want to continue? What are some projects that you were not able to complete that you want to do now? It is always encouraging to reflect on your growth and the positive things that happened.

    Not into making bucket lists and plans? I encourage you to at least reflect on your summer and what you want it to look like. Try to focus on your mental health this summer before the hustle and bustle of the year starts again. Do something for you, try something new, and have fun this summer!

 

 

Tags:  #wellness #SAPro #SAGrad #GLACUHO #H_W 

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