Moving You From Surviving to


Summer Reading Day  

As a teenager, summer reading for me used to involve a paperback, a beach towel and some baby oil to encourage fast tanning.

Okay, it doesn’t have to be a paperback, and PLEASE don’t use baby oil, but summer does evoke a picture in your mind, right?

Doesn’t this just make you want to brew a cuppa, go outside crack open a good book?

I remember lots of summers spent reading as a child or young adult, and just not because I had a school summer reading list. (Although the idea of a summer reading list filled me with joy. I do realize that this isn’t the case for everyone.)

Reading all day makes the day go by very slowly. And, even if you are an avid reader, when was the last time you read a book outside? We get busy and forget that joy of reading a good book by the lake, in the backyard under a tree, in a rocking chair on the front porch or….you get the hint.

If you’re lucky and you have the whole day in front of you, by all means I say take a day to read. But if you’re like most people, you’ll need to carve out some time. First step – schedule it in for today. Try not to leave it for the last moments of the day, or you may find yourself falling asleep before you really start to enjoy it. And what about a trip to a bookstore or the library today to choose something special to read? If you’re not sure what might interest you, they often have a summer reading display or you can browse the list of current bestsellers. (Here’s the current NYT Online list of E-book and Print Fiction)

There are no rules for what you should be reading during the summer. This morning, I heard someone say, “I’m reading The Picture of Dorian Gray. Not exactly good summer reading, is it?”  Why not?

And it doesn’t have to be a book, does it?

You might go to the library or the bookstore and pick up a magazine you’ve never read before, just because it piques your interest. Or find an old favorite that you haven’t read for awhile. Or a magazine you might normally consider a guilty pleasure or “trashy.” A secret pal at work once gave me an issue of the National Enquirer, which I found to be an outrageously fun and silly way to spend that hour.

Audio books and podcasts are also encouraged if you want someone else to tell you a story. (I filmed a Just Five Minutes about Podcasts awhile ago – they are podcasts about every subject you can imagine. And one of my favorites is Harper Collins Audio.)

And don’t forget Short Stories, Essays or Novellas – often overlooked, if you ask me.

The only “self care rule” I think you should consider about this prompt today is to make sure it’s something you want to read for you and for fun, rather than a must read for work, school or someone else’s request.

So, this prompt is Read for Pleasure today, preferably not online or on a tablet if you can get away with that. (Unplugging, even just for an hour, is also self-care at its best these days. And get ready because, if you’re up to it, we are about to schedule a Tech Free Day!)

Today is the day for you to make a few lists that contain 7 things each. Things that belong to you – not to someone else in your family. Don’t “should on yourself” either. 

Dance Break Day 6 of our Sumer of Self Care involves doing a little dancing. Are you game? Have you ever watched someone dance for fun, even if just for a few seconds, and laughed out loud? In any given day, at least one video of someone dancing pops across my social media feed and […]

Now that we have taken a few moments to look at how and when to say no, today we will look at what makes you say, “HECK YES!!!”  Because taking a look at your Absolute Yes List helps you remember what to say no to.

When we say yes more often than we mean to, out of a sense of obligation or feeling coerced, we find ourselves doing things that carry resentment or even downright anger. And the anger isn’t usually directed solely at the person we said yes to. More often than not, our anger is felt internally – directed straight to our own heart – because we failed to say no. And that takes a toll on our ability to love ourselves and to express self care.

These tolerations subconsciously and consciously drain our energy, make us feel tense and sometimes even engage us in a conversation of self-blame and frustration. “Why can’t I just take the time to paint that floor?” Or “I will get to that soon or I will scream!!!” They block us from feeling good about what we have or bringing in new opportunities. If we have too much physical and mental clutter, we don’t have room to love ourselves and love the space we are in.

Sometimes we feel the heaviness of things that are happening around us. Or carrying tension in our neck and shoulders. We work at a desk and when things get hectic, we tense up without even realizing.

Self care is any act you incorporate in your moment or day or month or life that brings you joy, peace, well-being, healthy boundaries, a healthy body, a healthy sense of being – it’s anything you do for yourself, not for others or to make yourself better for someone else.

I’m going to be very transparent with you. We all have our quirks, right? So I’m going to be honest about one of mine.

When I am feeling really anxious or like things are out of control, I begin to hoard books. I do this in a couple of ways: I go to the library and check out two or three; I look at my own library of books and grab a few off the shelf, stacking them on my nightstand; or I pick up my tablet and start shopping for e-books and download a few.

But what it meant for me was getting my head in the game. Aligning my mind and my business goals with what I want to do, my vision, my why, my business philosophy. My values. Everything should be synced and pulling me forward.