By Marilyn Halpern, MSW, LSW ~
Keep looking up – that’s the secret of life. – Charles Schutz
June ushers in Great Outdoors Month, which began in 1998 under President Bill Clinton as Great Outdoors Week. This popular event has grown over the years into a month-long celebration of America’s beautiful land and waterways with thousands of events across the country. Five consecutive Presidents, including President Biden, have issued Great Outdoors Month proclamations, and each year the Senate designates June as a month to celebrate the outdoors and recognize nature’s healing contributions to the mental, emotional, physical, and economic health of our nation. Everyone, let’s go outdoors!
First things first! Strive to keep yourself hydrated and safe. We are generally more active in the summertime. Yet, at the end of the day, we can find that we are doing more and drinking less. Water is the gold standard for hydration. Add zest to your daily libation by infusing your water with citrus slices, strawberries, mint or refreshing cucumbers. Apps like “Daily Water’ can prompt reminders to drink water every hour or two. As you enjoy the Great Outdoors Month, don’t forget your sunglasses, walking stick, hat, sturdy shoes, lip balm, sunscreen, cell phone and of course, your water bottle.
Watch a sunrise or a sunset. Generally, in the summer, sunrise and sunsets are the coolest parts of the day. For many people, this is a peaceful experience that brings a lot of joy. Look for opportunities to experience this tranquility, like watching the sunrise with a cup of coffee, or watching the sunset at one of our many Colorado lakes.
Keep a summer, travel or gratitude journal. Journaling is about being present with our reflections, emotions, and experiences while capturing those thoughts in writing. It can be done just about anywhere, and it doesn’t take too much time. You might feel more comfortable by beginning with a few sentences or a list. The key is to consistently jot things down over the summer. It’s fun to go back in the autumn and contemplate your adventures.
Allow yourself to be spontaneous! Think about something you have not done in a while or something you have always wanted to do, and go for it! Whether it is going up in a hot air balloon or going for a leisurely hike in the mountains, the time is now to let your adventure begin.
Left Brain Buddha has created A Mindful Summer Bucket List. Download it free at this link: https://leftbrainbuddha.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/Mindful-Summer-Bucket-List.pdf
Generation Wild Colorado has generated a list of 100 things to do outdoors with your kids, grandchildren or those young at heart. Print the list from this link: https://uploads-ssl.webflow.com/5cd438328d2d773733cb4b4b/644bd221fab44edaeaf8c72a_Generation-Wild-100-Things-List_ENG.pdf
This summer enjoy all of your outdoor adventures and the healing power of nature!
Marilyn Halpern is the founder and executive director of Aspen Care Services. This locally owned business provides medical power of attorney, care management and professional guardianship services in the Denver Metro area. For more information visit – www.aspencareservices.com or www.aginglifecare.org. Photo credit: Marilyn Halpern