Oh, sweet summer. Sultry, sunkissed, lazy, lush, dreamy, and just plain delicious. The flowers, trees, and people are in full bloom. Everyone has a more relaxed gear, and let’s face it: we’re all just a bit better in summer (including better looking - yes, you know it’s true). Which brings me to my next point. It’s time to relax the rules.
During the rest of the year, I work with a loose version of what I like to call the 80/ 20 rule. Eighty percent of the time I work out, eat well, get enough sleep. Twenty percent of the time I cheat. You know that old adage, everything in moderation, including moderation. If I’m totally honest, in summer it’s more like the 60/ 40 rule. I don’t throw all my good habits out the window, but, well… there’s always an occasion to have a glass of wine, to have an extra scoop of ice cream, to stay up too late, to sleep in just a little bit longer. We’re all human. And what a tragedy if we weren’t.
Living well comes in many subtle shades of grey. Life is here to be lived, after all, not counted and judged at every moment of every day. It’s a balancing act of doing what makes you feel good - and then doing what makes you feel good in the moment, if not the next day. That’s what weekends are for. And summer, that short and sweet season, falls squarely into this category.
I’m not advocating throwing all your good habits out the window. Of course not! You’ll be cursing me by Labour Day. But don’t beat yourself up if your habits become a little looser with the heat. An occasional relaxing of the rules is great for your body and your soul, and at no time is that more true than in summer. One of the most important lessons I’ve learned is that ’best for your soul’ equates at some unknowable level with best for your health. So don’t beat yourself up for the little cheats of these brief, magical weeks. Rather, seize the day. If happiness is health, then summer is your best medicine.