5 Ways to Build Resilience & Rejuvenate this Summer

Stress is the body’s response to anything perceived as a challenge. The more challenges or stressors we face, the more our stress builds if left unmanaged.

This is where resilience comes in. Resilience is the ability to bounce back from life events that discourage, agitate or stress us. If managed well, stress is not a bad thing. It can give us courage, focus and excitement.

Summer is the perfect time to start building resilience before we head back into the fall and winter, when the seasonal blues can get us down.

Here are 5 easy ways to combat stress and build resilience this summer:

1. Move. Something as simple as taking a short walk after work can do a lot to clear your head and make you feel less stressed.

2. Shop Local. Turn one of your routine tasks into something more invigorating and healthy. Set an intention to buy fresh produce at your local farmer’s market. Not only will you get quality food, but you will feel good about supporting community businesses.

3. Practice Gratitude. It is easy to take things for granted because we get used to them being there. Make it a new habit to write down things you are grateful for every morning. Experiment by taking pictures of things as if you are on vacation and seeing them for the first time. You would be surprised at the beauty in your own backyard. Regularly practicing gratitude for what you already have will go a long way the next time you start to get stressed about accomplishing a short or long term goal.

4. Meditate. You can find a bench almost anywhere. The next time you see one, have a seat there and commit just a few minutes to sit still and be present. Forget your To Do list and simply breathe in your surroundings. Try inhaling for 4 seconds, holding for 2, and then exhaling for 6 additional second. Repeat for as long as necessary to feel relaxed.

5. Rest. This may be the most important and difficult suggestion on the list. It is easy to over-schedule ourselves during the summer. From yard work to travel to special events, there is so much to do. Remember that it can be a good thing to say “no” sometimes in exchange for some downtime.

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