If you are anything like me, right at the beginning of August you are already mourning the end of summer. I find that every year I look forward to summer so much that my “once it’s the summer” to do list just gets longer and longer. When summer finally arrives, I feel anxious because the list is so long I can’t possibly do it all! Next thing you know, I feel like I’ve wasted the summer and let depression and regret set in.
This year I’ve promised myself that I wouldn’t fall into the same pitfalls so I’ve come up with 3 ways to make the best of any time off.
1. Prioritize but be flexible
Many of us make lists and it’s a great way to organized our thoughts and putting things on paper allows us to feel more in control of our lives. The key to truly capitalizing on lists is to make sure they are realistic, reasonable and prioritizes the “musts” and the “would be nice.”
For me, I cut my list down from 18 things to do to 5 things that will make me happy this summer. The second part is: be flexible. Things come up and interests and priorities change so don’t be afraid to cross off items and make way for something even better. For me I didn’t anticipate how the Korean Drama craze would take me by storm… so here I am adding K-Drama marathon to my summer to do list.
2. Live in the moment
Those of you without kids tend to be much better at this concept than parents like me. So many things revolve around bath and bed time, lessons, daycare pick-up and drop-off, that time is of the essence. But this summer I’ve taken on a new outlook. When pressed for time, it’s difficult not to focus on the end goal of every activity. I’ve realized when you rush through life to get to the end result so many of the fun things along the way are missed. Tonight when I read baby S her bed time stories, I’m going to take the extra time to make all the voices and all the sound effects. Next weekend when I am out celebrating my bff’s birthday I’m going to put on some music, pour a glass of wine and enjoy just putting on eyeliner and curling my hair.
Stop and smell the flowers? I totally get it.
3. Cut yourself some slack
Work demands, social demands and family demands bombard our everyday lives. Being a closet perfectionist, I hate to disappoint but that also means I’m spread thin. The only person that is truly holding you to these high expectations is yourself. Give yourself permission to dedicate some time to yourself to do whatever it is you want. How to get over this mental block? For me, it’s about voicing my needs to the people in my life. For example, last week my amazing husband got our daughter ready for school, drove her to and from school, made dinner, bathed her and put her to bed while the whole time I lounged around, snacked and gorged on Korean drama while surfing fashion blogs.
My revised summer to do list
- Travel (Paris, London, NYC)
- Spend time with my daughter S
- Host a seriously fancy tea party with my girlfriends
- Watch Korean dramas
- Finish furnishing our new home
S and I both rocking the coral red. mini COS and JCrew.
Categories: Baby and Me, Home
A great article Penny! You described my yearly dilemma so well… I like the realistic approach to my goals, but I have a hard time being flexible and just ‘letting go’ sometimes.
Thanks for your blog. I miss you so much. Can’t wait to our next get together.
It’s been too too long and I’m so sad we miss the gathering this summer. Hope all is well and let’s see if you me and Dana and swing a quick bite in the next few weeks.