One of the things that I absolutely love about summer is the opportunity to rest and refocus. With things moving so fast in the fall, winter, and spring I certainly enjoy giving myself the gift of slowing down. This summer my kids are home with me. I didn’t sign them up for any camps. Most people get quiet when they hear that I have all four home. The first few weeks are usually spent creating a routine that works for everyone. Kids have gotten used to having every minute planned for them, so it takes some time for my kiddos to fall into a routine where they are being creative and finding things to do on their own. Having all four home gives me an opportunity to connect with each of them as well as work on any behaviors that may have gotten out of sorts during the school year. We have play dates, we explore our city, we do activities and games together, and they get a chance to just be. They don’t have to perform for anyone over the summer. They can read and play and even nap if they choose to. I feel very blessed to be able to give my kids this gift of time!
I hope that after this summer they will begin to learn the rhythm of building rest into their lives. I want them to have great work ethic and be go-getters. I also want them to be able to rest and refocus. Here is how I’m teaching these valuable lessons this summer.
Rest: From the wise words of my mother in law “You can’t teach a lesson you have not learned.” This is something we have to model for our children. Most people think of rest as being lazy, but I recently read, the difference between the two is rest gives you the opportunity to recharge because you’ve been productive. While laziness is a state where you are unwilling to work hard. Our creator modeled the importance of rest (Genesis 2:1-3.) Rest gives our minds and bodies the opportunity to rejuvenate, which will in turn get our creative juices flowing. My kids see it modeled by me first. They see me work hard and hustle, but they also see me take breaks. As I raise both boys and girls I find it important to teach my girls the importance of taking time for self. I also think it’s important to model for my boys that the women they choose as life partners will need to rest (teaching them how to manage their expectations early.)
Refocus: Do you take time to reflect? This is a practice that I truly can’t live without. Whenever I get into a space where I’m beginning to feel anxious, it’s typically because I have not spent time reflecting on what is serving me well in my life and what I can let go of. With summer slow down, it’s a perfect time to refocus. What things have worked well for you in the beginning of the year? What habits have you picked up that you can take sometime to tweak or let go of? Do you ever find yourself throughout the year saying, “I’ll get to that later!” Summer is the perfect time to cross off those things on both your bucket and to do list. We use the summer to brush up on skills as well as try new things. Kids do what we do. If they see us making healthy life choices they are more inclined to develop healthy life choices in their own lives!
With summer rest we will all be ready to rock and roll come Fall!
How will you rest and refocus over this summer holiday? It’s not too late to implement some best practices for your summer slowdown. Tell me what you are doing in the comments below!