a woman sitting by the beach, sunset

Mindful through the summer

Summer, sun, sunshine – long evenings on the riverbank, coffee klatch and picnic with friends in a shady place, after-work beer in the open air. Even if you don’t find yourself in these activities, you’ll notice that summer is an invitation for people to spend their days outside. Why spend your time in stuffy indoor spaces when the sun and warmth fill so many of us with satisfaction? Here’s a mindful approach on staying relaxed and cool in summer.

This brings us to the topic of today’s post: Meditation during the hot months – how to integrate your daily dose of mindfulness into the summer!

Meditate outside

Probably our first suggestion has already come to you itself. What you do indoors, you do outdoors. Moving the meditation session to a balcony, terrace or park is not very complicated and can be motivating, as long as you enjoy your stay outdoors. Visualize yourself in a meadow, a shady place under a tree… Not bad, right? Depending on the temperature – in the summer of 2019 peak values were finally reached, which do not necessarily invite you outside at lunchtime – this change of scene is especially useful in the cooler morning and evening hours.

But this is only one possibility. Of course, here we have more suggestions to inspire the design of your mindfulness in summer.

Walking, running, meditating

Have you ever heard of walking meditation? This is a form of mindfulness meditation in which you focus your perception and attention on every single step you take. An example would be to slowly stroll barefoot over a green area – in this case, consciously feel how your hips move, how your feet make contact with the ground, how the grass tickles your toes. If you wish, you can of course close your eyes as you would normally do.

Another scenario: You have just come from work, get off the tram and want to go shopping. Your path leads you purposefully to the shop you have chosen. This time you walk with your eyes open, your attention is deliberately focused on the surroundings – what sounds can you perceive? What are you seeing, smelling or tasting right now? How does the sun feel on your skin?

The advantages of this way of meditating are that it is not only possible to do it outdoors, but also that it is extremely easy to integrate into everyday life. We have walking paths every day. However, many of us distract ourselves in the meantime with music or other activities. In itself, this is not reprehensible, but consider, using one of your daily routes for a few minutes of careful walking. Or try jogging mindful; you can even combine your sport with mindfulness practice.

The cool wet, the holiday and the conscious sensation – staying cool in summer

Even in the pool, lake or sea you can be mindful: here you can focus your attention especially on your physical sensations. What does it feel like to be in contact with water? Do I register a current? A breeze? Do my feet have contact with the ground? Do I feel sand between my toes?

Now think back to your last vacation. What did you enjoy doing at that time? Our first association was that trying new dishes or feasting on your own favorite dishes can be a not-to-be-missed pleasure on holiday. Hence our tip: you can also be mindful when eating – we have even written a post about this.

Long Story Short

In this article it may have become clear that mindfulness can be integrated into many areas of our daily lives (even while using our smart phone). It doesn’t always have to be a classic meditation session at home or in a seminar-like room. On the contrary, use your everyday life and things you do for the fun of it, and combine it with mindfulness and the benefits it brings. So to summarize once again what has been written here:

Meditation in summer

. Move your other meetings outside (e.g. on the balcony, in the garden, in a park)

. You should also try walking or running meditation outdoors, preferably barefoot in a meadow.

. Mindful eating is suitable for both everyday life and holidays.

. Even in water – when swimming, bathing, relaxing – mindfulness is possible.

What’s the point? If you are more interested in the effects of meditation, take a look here.

Well, want to?

Mindfulife offers from 12.08 to 02.09.2018 on Mondays to meditate together on the banks of the river Main as part of a summer activity. Mindful Monday goes MAINful Monday – 18.30 – 19.00 near the MainCafé in Frankfurt am Main and on a donation basis. Please feel free to come by!

You can also find more information on our Instagram and our Facebook page.

We look forward to meditating together and until then…

Summer, sun, mindfulness!

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