The past few weeks have been filled with summertime weather and activities. I hesitate to include idyllic in my description, for there have been some interesting moments! However, all-in-all, this has been one of the best summers I have had in years.
I have worked very hard for very long time, and while I enjoy my profession, I have come to a crossroads. I am fortunate that I was able to take the summer off to determine my direction.
I approached my summer break just as I did when I was a kid. It was time to PLAY! Forget all the heavy decisions and deadlines; my days were free for doing anything I wanted, including doing nothing at all. What an amazing, liberating feeling!
I have approached each day like a kid out of school! I have read, and read, and read some more (yes, I always did a lot of that on summer break); I have eaten Popsicles and ice cream on a regular basis; I have reconnected with friends and family I haven’t seen in far too long; and I have spent time just letting my mind wander.
I experienced the ravages of a tornado, but from that, the tight-bond of family; I have taken a road trip with my daughter and relished the camaraderie and scenery; I lost a beloved pet, but have found a new piece of my soul; and I have tuned back into the nature around me.
For the past several years, I anticipated and relished most the foods, beverages and activities of summer. They are still very important summertime staples for me. However, this year I have found them to be secondary to the sweet taste of my summertime freedom. I know there are friends who don’t “get me” and take my absence personally–sorry, this summer isn’t about you, it’s about me. I know there are people who think I am foolish giving up a business at which I excel–I am tired and would rather walk away while I still have some passion for it, as I may one day return to it. I haven’t engaged in as many parties and festivities, yet I’m having the time of my life, on my own terms! I feel rested, energized, and at peace–not bad take-aways for a couple of months off. This has simply been cathartic in ways I never expected.
In a totally organic way, I have accomplished what I set out to do: to determine my new direction, and I am very excited about the future ahead of me! Along the way to this decision, during my summer off, I have reconnected with myself in a way I haven’t known in years! While we still have a month of summer, I am ready to shift gears and get going in my new direction, so my summer break is officially over.
I encourage you to take advantage of the remaining weeks of summer and create your own summer break–even if it’s just a weekend, or a day of doing what YOU want. Kick back, let someone else run the show (get a sitter, dog walker, whatever you need to truly take a day or two off). Identify what you enjoyed doing as a child on summer break. If possible, do that. Let your inner child come out to play! You might be surprised by the increase in your productivity, the improvement to your attitude, the relaxation of your body, and sense of empowerment and freedom, all from simply doing very little or nothing!
It has been a very long time since I identified with “Sweet Summertime” and I am thrilled to be reacquainted with her!
Have a great summertime day, my friend!