Unplugging for Peace and Presence During Summer

Written by: Myrtle Bautista

Summer getaways are typically wild and energetic. Many plan the ultimate beach getaway with their friends and family. Others attend electrifying outdoor concerts, while some go to lively water parks.

But what if you wanted a mental refresh amid the warm season? There are many ways to do so.

This article discusses three ways you can unplug for peace and presence during the summer. These include the following:

  • Nature walks and hikes
  • Meditation and yoga
  • Reading

Ready to take notes? Let’s dive in.

1. Take Nature Walks

For many, the best way to unplug is to embrace nature. Studies have found that one’s connection to nature has a positive effect on one’s mental health and cognitive abilities. This is why taking nature walks is a fantastic activity for mindfulness.

Image credit: Lucas Pezeta (Source: Pexels.com)

Amid the summer heat, walking outdoors seems like a bad idea. You might be at risk of getting a heat stroke or other heat-related illnesses. The beauty of nature walks is they take you away from the heart of civilization—cities where heat indexes can go sky-high on dog days.

To make your walking experience better, consider the following:

  • Choose early or late hours: You can avoid the intense midday heat by going out early in the morning or late in the afternoon.
  • Stay hydrated: Do not forget to bring enough water! Drink regularly to keep yourself hydrated.
  • Dress appropriately: Wear light, breathable clothing to cool your body, and wear a hat and sunglasses to shield yourself from the heat.
  • Select shaded trails: If you have several options for your walking trail, choose one that has a lot of shade.

Once you’re on the walking trail, put effort into using your five senses. Listen to the birds and rustling of leaves. Let your sight wander around the green. Touch the leaves of shrubbery and smell the fresh air.

This way, you can reconnect with nature and enjoy the blissful and tranquil break you need.

2. Get Into Outdoor Meditation or Yoga

Meditation and yoga are widely considered to be effective at reducing stress and mindfulness training.

Meditation, in particular, is simple and can be done almost anywhere. You can meditate while walking, commuting, or even waiting in a grocery store line.

You can easily practice meditation in winter, summer, spring, or fall. It’s simple and doesn’t require any equipment.

Meanwhile, yoga is less portable as an activity compared to meditation. But unlike meditation, it hits two birds with one stone. When you do yoga, you strengthen your body and sharpen your mind.

Yoga and meditation can be much more relaxing when done outdoors than indoors. Like nature walks, these activities can be an opportunity to reconnect with nature. Yet, they can be tricky to do during the summer.

To protect yourself from the scorching heat, choose a cool or shaded area. Local parks are great spots for meditation, as they provide plenty of shade. Plus, the trees and shrubbery help reduce heat.

If you’re living by a river or a lake, setting up near the water is a great way to stay cool while meditating. As a bonus, you can focus on the sound of the water to better focus while meditating.

For yoga, use pranayama techniques like Sitali (cooling breath) to help regulate your body temperature. A longer savana (corpse pose) is also advisable for your cool-down routine.

3. Read, Read, Read

Suppose you live in an area where the temperatures reach extreme highs during the summer. Going outside is a terrifying idea, and you’d rather stay inside your home in the comfort of its air-conditioned rooms.

But how are you supposed to unplug when you’re in your room surrounded by gadgets and other distractions? Pick up a book and read.

It’s never too late to start reading. Even if you’ve never been a reader before and don’t plan to become a bookworm anytime soon, you can still read a book from time to time.

You can open that one book that’s been on your shelf or storage box for a long time. You can borrow one from a friend or from the local library.

If you prefer to read an ebook, do so using an ebook reader. Using a laptop, smartphone, or tablet to read exposes you to all sorts of distractions, not to mention that it’s counterintuitive to unplugging.

Whether it’s a novel or a textbook, reading is among the best ways to relax at home. Books can drag you into their worlds, disconnecting you from the hustle and bustle of the modern world. They do this without you having to leave the comfort of your home.

If you find yourself having difficulties staying focused on reading, that’s understandable. This is especially true if you were never a prolific reader.

However, don’t give up immediately. Start small, then read more and more as your focus and reading skills improve. You can start with a page or two and then add another per week. Eventually, you’ll find yourself finishing chapters in one sitting!

Final Words

How do unplugging activities help you practice mindfulness in the summer? Ditching your laptop or mobile device for a day or two lets you immerse yourself in the present moment. When you’re in nature, you forge a deeper connection with your environment. This relaxes your mind and enhances mental clarity.

Whether you take nature walks, do yoga under the shade, or bury yourself in books, always be mindful of the summer heat. High temperatures can cause dehydration quickly, turning your tranquil moment into a life-and-death situation.

Next time you want to disconnect from life’s stresses amid the summer season, consider the activities we discussed.

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