I don’t know about y’all, but I feel like this summer is flying by. Even though this is what happens almost every summer of my life, the strangeness of the summers of 2020 and 2021 have made this summer feel very foreign and unlike any other one I’ve experienced. It’s been years since I’ve been this busy, and expending that amount of social energy is taxing. It’s this dichotomy that I want to explore today – how do we take care of our mental health when time is flying by and we’re constantly on the go?
One caveat I’d like to note before I go further: it’s important to note that I’m severely introverted. Part of that is social anxiety that’s only increased in the past few years, but the larger part of my introversion is energy-based. This means that being social can often drain my energy, even when I’m having a lot of fun or doing things I love. Whether you’re an introvert, an extrovert or even an ambivert, knowing where you receive energy and where you spend it can play a big role in your wellness.
So, back to this challenge I’m having. Summer is a time when people are constantly on the go, where we often have more plans than usual and people are more available than other times of the year. It’s easy to forget about our mental health and come back to it in the fall, but we deserve better!
Mental health might be a tool that some people can pick up and put down at a moment’s notice, but that doesn’t mean that’s what is best for us. Flexing those mental health muscles can actually be more important when you’re busy or constantly on the go, as it reminds us of the present and attending to our needs, rather than our wants. And that means that instead of just taking time, this summer we might need to make time for our mental health.
It’s easy — understandable, even — to get overwhelmed with the busyness the summer brings. A lot might fall by the wayside, but our mental health shouldn’t be one of those things. Now’s the time to dig into your mental health toolkit, find what you need, and take that with you into whatever challenge is next. You might need it more now than you think!