Summer is the season for rest, relaxation, and recharging. For Latina moms and working professionals, it can still feel like a hectic time and you may find yourself putting off that much needed break.
Burnout is very real, and can seriously impact your health if left untreated. Additionally, Latinas are at great risk of developing heath issues such as heart disease and diabetes, along with mental health issues such as depression and anxiety.
Your health is important, so give yourself the time to relax this summer and indulge in self-care with some of our favorite summer recharge activities. You deserve it!
Feeling drained? Try these summer recharge activities to give you that needed boost!
Physical recharge activities
Bring the spa to your home
Hydrotherapy, aka a bath or shower, is a great way to relax and indulge in some self-care. Take the time each week to give yourself a luxurious bath or shower. Try using Epsom salt in your bath or essential oils. Epsom salt can help to remove toxins, improve muscle function, and reduce inflammation linked to stress. Essential oils can give you many benefits as well which we explore more below in our aromatherapy section.
Another pampering activity to add to your self-care routine is exfoliating. Exfoliating scrubs will give you that summer recharge by improving blood circulation which in turn will help reduce stress levels, boost energy, and keep you feeling healthy and refreshed.
Experiment with food
What you put into your body will greatly impact your energy levels. If you’ve found yourself in a food rut, consuming less-than-nutritious meals due to hectic schedules and stress, try changing things up. You don’t need to do a radical diet or set unrealistic goals, but incorporating a mix of complex carbohydrates, such as whole grains and starchy vegetables, with lean proteins and healthy fat at each meal is a place to start.
Focus on building a balanced plate. Play with color and texture and try new and exciting recipes! Meal prepping and meal planning is also a habit to build and will help keep you eating healthy, nutritious meals all year long, especially when you’re too busy to cook daily. You can also get the whole family involved with cooking. Make meal prepping a family activity! Set aside a night to cook a family meal together. This is also a great way to teach children some practical skills and spend some quality time together.
Move your body in new ways
It’s oh so tempting to just lay in bed when you’re feeling tired. You’re relaxing, right? Isn’t that what recharging is all about? Sometimes yes. But often, when you’re feeling exhausted or drained, sitting and lounging around can actually make you feel more tired.
Instead, try getting up and moving your body. You don’t have to start an intense exercise routine or even do the same thing every day. Keep things fun and interesting by switching it up. Consider trying out some of the latest summer 2021 fitness trends. Take a walking or bike around your neighborhood. Go to the beach and walk along the shore. Start an outdoor yoga group with friends. Or even just dance around your living room in a spontaneous dance party with your kids. The key is to keep your body moving and get that blood circulating. You’ll be feeling energized in no time.
Find your zen with aromatherapy
Research suggests that aromatherapy is beneficial for treating stress, anxiety, and improving sleep quality. Two scents that are believed to be beneficial for treating stress are lavender and sage. Some aromatherapy essential oils can be mixed with a carrier oil and massaged directly onto the body, rubbed on the wrists or diffused into the air. You can also add them to your baths or showers for extra relaxation.
Mental recharge activities
Unplug from technology
Social media can be draining. People often seem perfect and it’s easy to forget that what they post are only a snapshot moment of their lives. We can get so caught up in comparing ourselves to others, measuring our successes and failures, and this can quickly bring our spirits down. On top of social media sapping our energy, spending long hours staring at screens, plugging in, and being on the clock can also contribute to burnout.
When you start feeling like this, it’s time to unplug. Put social media on pause. Go outside and indulge in other activities. One great way you can kick your tech addiction is to create a summer reading list. Work your way through some of your favorite books while sitting out in the sun beach-side, pool-side, or at your local park.
Refocus with meditation
Studies suggest that meditation can help people find purpose in their lives in times of mental distress. Meditation has been shown to decrease anxiety and fatigue while improving attention and memory.
Some simple ways to incorporate meditation into your life can be to simply sit somewhere quietly each day and practice deep breathing. Even just a few minutes each day can help to improve your mood. Another option is to listen to a guided meditation. There are plenty of mediation and positive affirmation videos or audios available on YouTube and apps like Headspace.
Release your inner artist
While you’re taking your break from technology, get back in tune with your inner artist! Art is a great way to help soothe and relax the mind. Don’t worry about your skill level. Think about how kids express themselves through art. It’s often messy. Abstract. Let that inner child take over. Grab some art supplies and start drawing or painting. Another great relaxing art activity to reduce stress and recharge is coloring. You can find coloring books for adults with complex patterns or cool designs at most bookstores and art supply shops.
You might be interested: 5 Healthy recipes by Latina chefs to try this National Nutrition Month
Embark on a journey into journaling
I bet you’ve had people tell you all about the benefits of journaling before. Have you tried it out, only to feel kind of silly writing out diary-like entries about your day or thoughts? Do you have a collection of discarded journals with only a few pages used? Don’t worry, you’re not alone. I’ve been there! And I like writing. But sometimes keeping a journal ends up feeling more like a chore and you think: where are those amazing health benefits I was promised?
Instead of forcing yourself to write daily or pen diary-like entries, use your journal as a tool to help you destress and work through your thoughts. Sometimes when we have a problem, it helps to step back. Take some time to write out your thoughts. Others use their journals to express gratitude for what’s going well and celebrate the little things.
Whatever you’re writing about, don’t worry about making things sound nice and pretty. This is your personal journal, not a public blog. You can make lists, bullet points, fragmented sentences of thoughts or ideas. Make your journal a reflection of yourself.
Some people like to decorate their journals or add art, mementos, and photos. But don’t feel pressured to have the “perfect” journal. Yours can simply be jotted notes. You can write daily or once a month or just, whenever you need a moment to put your thoughts on paper.
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