written by Raulla S. Mitchell
August-September is a transitional time.
Languid days of summer quickly fade into the hustle and bustle of back-to-school prep in the air.
Some of us love to get wrapped up in the excitement of new adventures in learning.
This is a time when many of us have too many items on a to-do-list, particularly if we or someone we love are moving away from home for the first time to go to college.
Any situation that we find emotionally stressful, will likely stress our skin, resulting in unanticipated skin sensitivities, irritations and eruptions.
Even the good stuff, and we hope it’s all good stuff, can stress our skin when we have too many changes and too much excitement.
Four skin stressors:
- transitions or changes in lifestyles, seasons, environments, and relationships
- revved up lifestyle pace with too many activities and responsibilities on a to-do list, it’s all so exciting but,….
- lack of sufficient sleep necessary for reparation, rejuvenation and strength of the immune system, because who can sleep when there’s so much excitement in the air and things to do, places to go…. we get it
- not enough time to live harmoniously in synch with the present moment; obsessing about the past, worrying about the future, or simply jumping from one thing to the next, road runner style
Your skin is your largest organ. Everything you think, feel and experience expresses itself in your skin. A calm relaxed mind and spirit is expressed in a clear healthy balanced skin.
Simple ways to reduce and manage stress at this transitional time:
Delight in each moment of the remaining summer days. Care for your mind, body and spirit with a cool refreshing and energizing morning bath or shower to start your day, and slowly unwind from a busy day with the ritual of a warm evening bath to send you off to dreamland where healing and rejuvenation occur naturally.
Look at your to-do list first thing in the morning, then set it aside until the end of the day. You don’t need to keep checking line items off your list throughout the day. This is YOUR life! YOU create a list. Your list does not determine your life. Moments add up to days, and days add up to your lifetime. Your lifetime will be fragments of beauty from your best moments, which are rarely written on lists.
Relax and very slowly unwind with the ritual of a warm bath before bed. Treat yourself as if you’re a guest at a spa. Sip herbal tea, light fragrant candles around your bath, exfoliate, massage in lotion and body butter to soothe dry summer skin, and slip under freshly fluffed covers.
Take time for yourself, apart from your responsibilities to family, work, friends and organizations.
Experience the simple pleasures of long relaxed days and nights that seem to go on forever. Decide what can wait while you give yourself time to enjoy nature, daydreaming, relaxing, nurturing your mind and spirit.
Grab a friend and lay down on the warm summer grass. Stare at the clouds as they move across the sky. Do they remind you of animals or faces of people you know? The mystery of clouds need not belong to children alone.
Sit barefoot underneath the shade of a tree and read the book you’ve been longing to dig into.
Listen to your favorite music. Close your eyes. Let the harmony of the music and the natural world become a part of your inner self.
Fresh, locally grown organic summer berries, melons, peaches, nectarines and plums are in season for just a while longer. Take advantage of the panoply of healthy fresh fruits and support your local economy with a trip to the local farmers market or co-op this summer.
Everything from summer to fall can be so easy! When we celebrate the beauty and joy of each season, we approach each day with joie de vivre and look forward to what the future holds. We soothe and nourish our skin from the inside out, and outside in.
Sink into those last few luscious days of summer, and gently flow into fall. Relax, stay happy in the moment, do what you can and remember tomorrow’s another day. Your skin will love you and life will be immeasurably more fab, easy and pleasurable! Isn’t that what it’s all about?