“Rest is not idleness, and to lie sometimes on the grass on a summer day listening to the murmur of water, or watching the clouds float across the sky, is hardly a waste of time.” – John Lubbock
I think we can all agree that the Summer, in general, is a season that is easy to feel positive about. The colder, darker months give way to a season that allows us to leave our various forms of hibernation, whether that be in our homes, our wardrobes or our minds, and connect with the wider world in a much less insular way.
Having said this… even though the summer almost demands our attention, any day of the year can become cluttered with the complexities and difficulties of human life. Even if the sun is shining, and the days are long, the season could still pass one by if one does not care to take a moment or two to stop and appreciate it. Each season has its elements for which to be grateful, Summer is no different. So, for the sake of your wellbeing, take a moment or two to stop over the next few months to ensure that these summery things are not missed…
1. The Sun
Yes, I know, the appearance of the sun, in its warmest, non-obscured by clouds, form is sometimes a little unpredictable. However, even if the sun is poking in and out of the clouds a little, its prominence is still to be appreciated.
We British always seem to be able to find a way to be down on things… if it is not the fact that August has served up a bit of a drab day, then it is that the sun is too hot. We wait all Winter to enjoy long bright days in the sun, so it should be enjoyed when it is so good as to turn up for a while. For me, there is not a place in the world that doesn’t seem to feel a little better when in the sun; a little brighter, a little more joyful, a little more hopeful… be mindful of this and enjoy those times… whether it is a snatched hour on an unpredictable day of weather, or a long hot week in the sunlight.
I am lucky enough to live in a street that is flanked by plant life… trees, bushes, grassland… a joy. The day I know that summer has truly come is the day that I take the bus down that road and observe that the spindly brown and grey skeletal trees that framed the road throughout the Winter and Autumn have burst into life and a canopy of green is all I can see for miles. This always lightens my mood. Green is the colour of new life, and there is no simpler pleasure than laying on the fresh grass on a hot day and looking up to the sky past a collage of greenery. The perfect way to enjoy a moment of reflectiveness, mindfulness or meditation.
3. Other People
Have you ever noticed that everybody seems happier when the sun is out? I certainly have. The bleaker months of the year can make the general mood of a place seem on the grouchier side, but give a community a long, hot day, and they are different people! The mood is very different in the Summer, everybody seems, well, happier. If that is not worth noticing and being thankful for, I don’t know what is!
Hydration is more important than ever when it is hot. Have you ever been so parched that a glass of really cold water tastes like the most incredible thing in the world? Water is a simple pleasure, and we, in the West, forget to appreciate what a miraculous thing access to clean, safe water is. So, next time you grab a glass of water from the tap this Summer, take a quick moment to recognise what a wonderful thing that is.
5. The Rain
We are in England, right? So, yes, there will be sun. However, what is also for certain is that, at some point, there will be rain! This get’s many of us down. However, rain is amazing, important and not really that bad! Rain clears the air, it nourishes our crops and other plant life, it even helps to power our homes. So, next time it rains, take a moment to appreciate really how important it is, and what a jolly good piece of luck it is that our climate is so nourishing for our island.
By Chris Thomson
Another thing to enjoy about the hotter months is that it gives you an opportunity to spend more time out in that garden of yours! Mindfulness in the Garden
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