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25 Things You Must Do Before Summer Ends

25 Things You Must Do Before Summer Ends

Summer is here! Schools and colleges are out, the weather is warm, the pools are open, and the fruity drinks are flying. A lot of people love summer but ultimately end up doing the same old stuff. Why not make this summer a little different? Here are some awesome things you should definitely do before the end of this summer!

1. Go for a picnic.

It seems a little old-fashioned, but a picnic can still be a lot of fun. Put some food in a basket or a cooler, go find a grassy spot somewhere, plop down, and have a meal. Take your friends or your family along and make an experience that you’ll remember. Just be sure to avoid the ant hills!

2. Unplug and go connect with your real life friends.

Everyone is on the Internet these days. Some people will keep their face pointed directly at their phones even when they’re outside. Sometime this summer, make sure you set the phone down, step away from the computer, and experience life without the Internet. Make sure you stop by and see your friends. Catch up; do things that you used to do before the Internet became a dominant force in our lives. Your brain will thank you because sometimes, you just have to get away from the web.

3. Go find your nearest body of water.

Water is an amazing thing and you can do a lot with it. Go visit a body of water this summer, be it a lake, an ocean, a river, or something else. Go fishing and swimming. Lie on the beach or go for a boat ride. There are a hundred things you can do once you hit water. Visit one and enjoy yourself!

4. Walk somewhere.

We have legs that we are using less and less these days. Do your body, your cardiovascular system, and your health a favor and pound some pavement this summer. Find a park or a trail and walk around. If you live close enough, hoof it to your local shopping center. Whatever it is, just get off your behind and walk around outside for a while. Did we mention that the sun gives away free vitamin D?

5. Try something you’ve never tried before.

When we were kids, summer was the time of exploration. We took the time off of school to try a lot of new things and begin to compile the experiences that would eventually become treasured memories. Why does it have to stop now that we’re grown up? There are a lot of things left to experience and you have three whole months to do them! Go skydiving or water skiing. Take a road trip to a place you’ve never been before. The possibilities are endless and they’ll be your treasured memories years from now.

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6. Start a garden.

There is almost a primal satisfaction in making things grow out of the ground. A lot of people plant gardens and you should too. You can grow flowers, vegetables, fruits, or even herbs and spices. Finding what to grow can be fun and weeding your garden can be oddly calming and therapeutic. Plus at the end of the season, you can pick what you grow and use it for indoor decoration, as food, or to spice food. That’s a win-win!

7. Plank yourself three times a day.

Summertime is the best time to get yourself into shape. It’s nice outside which makes outdoor activities more fun. People generally lose weight over the summer because there is so much more to do. When we say plank, we don’t mean the silly thing that people do where they lie down on random things. We’re talking about the ab exercise that can help you firm up that tummy. If you start doing it now and keep going until fall, you’ll definitely see results!

8. Go on a vacation.

This one is self explanatory but nevertheless it’s important. The routine of day-to-day life can be stressful. Going on vacation allows you to get away from all the stress of your every day life. You can decompress, recharge, and give yourself a mental and emotional makeover. It also doesn’t hurt that vacations are fun.

9. Have a BBQ.

Activities before summer ends

    Fire up the grill and the smoker because it’s summer! There is no better time to have a BBQ and invite your friends, neighbors, and family over. It’s a fun time and it’s a great way to bond with the people you care about. BBQ is also delicious and with all of the other activities you’ll be doing, it’ll be easy to keep the weight off too.

    10. Do some house work.

    There is no more snow on the ground which means it’s a lot safer to get up on your roof and finally clean out those gutters and re-shingle the roof. Your yard could probably use some TLC too and the siding on your house is probably in need of a good power wash. We’ve no doubt you have a to do list and there is no better time to get it done than summer.

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    11. Attend a parade.

    Parades are a celebration. It’s people celebrating ideals and holidays. The feeling of going to one is generally uplifting and joyful. You get to see the artistic talents of the community through floats and presentations and you’re shoulder to shoulder with people who feel the same way. It’s a good time and worth checking out.

    12. Go see some fireworks.

    In the United States, we have a special day specifically for this event every year. Granted it’s our Independence Day, but until kids learn the value of the holiday in school, it’s known as the day where tens of millions of people across this country get together and fire things into the sky. A good fireworks display can be beautiful and breathtaking. It’s an experience you can’t miss.

    13. Go hiking and camping.

    Enjoying the great outdoors is always a good suggestion. Grabbing the old tent and sleeping bag, trekking out to the middle of nowhere, and sleeping there can be a liberating and refreshing experience. You’ll be away from civilization, away from the Internet, and bonding with nature. It’s great exercise too!

    14. Get yourself some fruity drinks.

    One of the best things about summer are the fruity drinks. Smoothies are amazing and there are hundreds of places that sell them. If you’re into making them at home you can find thousands of recipes. For adults, adding a little alcohol to them is never a bad idea. The Piña colada was invented for this time of year. Do yourself a favor and make yourself a nice big smoothie.

    15. Volunteer.

    It’s never too late to help those in need or to volunteer in places around your community. Volunteer to be a life guard or to help clean up trash out of your local parks and woods. It’s your community, so why not help keep it safe and clean? We’re sure your local church and school have an activity list long enough to fill your entire summer if you so chose.

    16. Have a garage sale.

    During the winter, we’ve no doubt that you stocked up on stuff during the holiday season. That means it’s time to climb into the attic, venture into the garage, and dive into the basement to find all the old junk you don’t need anymore. You could throw it away, but one man’s trash is another man’s treasure. Drop it out on the lawn, put some for sale signs on it, and make yourself a few bucks while you remove some clutter from your house.

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    17. Attend a bonfire.

    Bonfires are a lot of fun. You find a friend with a house in the middle of nowhere and build yourself a fire that Running Man would be jealous of. Grab the kids and some s’mores ingredients. Call up that hippie friend we all have that can strum practically every hit from the 70s on an acoustic guitar. Make a party out of it. As humans, we’ve always bonded over fire. Why not be a part of the proud tradition?

    18. Visit the zoo.

    Going to the zoo can be a fun activity, even if you’re an adult. You can visit the animals and learn a little bit about wildlife. If you have kids then this is practically a mandatory event. There is practically an entire day’s worth of activities to take part in and going to the zoo isn’t all that expensive either.

    19. Find a movie drive in.

    activities before summer ends

      This can be difficult one to accomplish because so many drive in movie theaters have closed down. If you’re up for it and you can find one relatively nearby, it’s totally worth driving out a couple of hours. There is something that is just fun about lying on your car or the bed of your truck while you watch a movie on a gigantic screen. It’s an experience that won’t be around for much longer, so it’s recommended you try it at least once.

      20. Take a nap in a hammock.

      Homer Simpson makes taking a nap in a hammock look fun because it is fun. It can be a challenge to find a hammock and find a place to put it up. It’s worth the effort because it’s the next best thing to going camping. You’re sleeping outside with nature and hammocks can be pretty comfortable if you set them up right.

      21. Watch a sunset from an epic location.

      Everywhere is within an hour of a great spot to watch a sunset. You may have hills in your area that you can climb where you can watch the sunset over your town. You may live near a beach where you can watch it happen over water. Sunsets are among the most popular computer and cell phone backgrounds ever because they’re absolutely gorgeous. You’ve seen the high resolution photos, but there really is nothing like experiencing the real thing.

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      22. Go to an outdoor concert.

      Summer is a great time to go see an outdoor show. A lot of artists tour during the summer and most large cities have an outdoor venue. There are even a boat load of festivals available where you can go see acts from multiple genres. Outdoor shows have more freedom than indoor shows and there is nothing that isn’t enjoyable about sitting in the grass with a beer and listening to music you enjoy.

      23. Pick some wildflowers or fruit.

      Everything is growing back and that means flowers and fruit. It doesn’t really matter where you live—you are within 30 minutes of a place where you can go pick some flowers in a field or find some wild fruit bushes or trees. Grab a basket and go pick some flowers!

      24. Enjoy some summer sports.

      There is no doubt that winter sports are the most fun to watch, but summer sports are the most fun to play. Find some friends and a baseball diamond and have a game. Tennis can be fun if you only have a couple of people. Horse shoes, badminton, and volleyball are also fun. It’s a great way to connect with friends and it’s good exercise!

      25. See a summer blockbuster.

      Some of the best movies come out over the summer. You’ll see them in commercials on TV and your coworkers will be talking about them around the water cooler. Grab the family and head on over to the local movie theater to enjoy it for yourself. Summer blockbusters are often the talk of the town. You’re going to hear your friends spout quotes, Saturday Night Live will play parodies, and it’ll get referenced a hundred times anyway. You may as well see them so you can get the jokes.

      There are thousands of things to do over the summer, but the important thing is that you enjoy yourself while you can. Soon the snow will be back, flu season will be in full effect, and you’ll be craving that strawberry daiquiri or firing up the grill. As the old saying goes, get it while the gettin’ is good!

      Featured photo credit: beauty and sexy woman at the sea via shutterstock.com

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      Published on November 14, 2018

      Why You Suffer from Constant Fatigue and How to Deal with It

      Why You Suffer from Constant Fatigue and How to Deal with It

      With our busy, always on lives, it seems that more and more of us are facing constant tiredness and fatigue on a regular basis.

      For many people, they just take this in their stride as part of modern life, but for others the impact can be crippling and can have a serious effect on their sense of wellbeing, health and productivity.

      In this article, I’ll share some of the most common causes of constant tiredness and fatigue and give you some guidance and action steps you can take to overcome some of the symptoms of fatigue.

      Why Am I Feeling Fatigued?

      Fatigue is extreme tiredness resulting from mental or physical exertion or illness.  It is a reduction in the efficiency of a muscle or organ after prolonged activity.[1]

      It can affect anyone, and most adults will experience fatigue at some point in their life. 

      For many people, fatigue is caused by a combination of lifestyle, social, psychological and general wellbeing issues rather than an underlying medical condition.

      Although fatigue is sometimes described as tiredness, it is different to just feeling tired or sleepy. Everyone feels tired at some point, but this is usually resolved with a nap or a few nights of good sleep. Someone who is sleepy may also feel temporarily refreshed after exercising. If you are getting enough sleep, good nutrition and exercising regularly but still find it hard to perform, concentrate or be motivated at your normal levels, you may be experiencing a level of fatigue that needs further investigation. 

      Symptoms of Fatigue

      Fatigue can cause a vast range of physical, mental and emotional symptoms including:

      • chronic tiredness, exhaustion or sleepiness
      • mental blocks
      • lack of motivation
      • headache
      • dizziness
      • muscle weakness
      • slowed reflexes and responses
      • impaired decision-making and judgement
      • moodiness, such as irritability
      • impaired hand-to-eye coordination
      • reduced immune system function
      • blurry vision
      • short-term memory problems
      • poor concentration
      • reduced ability to pay attention to the situation at hand

      Causes of Fatigue

      The wide range of causes that can trigger fatigue include:

      • Medical causes: Constant exhaustion, tiredness and fatigue may be a sign of an underlying illness, such as a thyroid disorder, heart disease, anemia or diabetes.
      • Lifestyle-related causes: Being overweight and a lack of regular exercise can lead to feelings of fatigue.  Lack of sleep and overcommitting can also create feelings of excessive tiredness and fatigue.
      • Workplace-related causes: Workplace and financial stress in a variety of forms can lead to feelings of fatigue.
      • Emotional concerns and stress: Fatigue is a common symptom of mental health problems, such as depression and grief, and may be accompanied by other signs and symptoms, including irritability and lack of motivation.

      Fatigue can also be caused by a number of factors working in combination.

      Medical Causes of Fatigue

      If you have made lifestyle changes to increase your energy and still feel exhausted and fatigued, it may be time to seek guidance from your doctor.

      Here are a few examples of illnesses that can cause ongoing fatigue. Seek medical advice if you suspect you have a health problem:

      Anemia

      Anemia is a condition in which you don’t have enough healthy red blood cells to carry adequate oxygen to the body’s tissues. It is a common cause of fatigue in women.

      Having anemia may make you feel tired and weak.

      There are many forms of anemia, each with its own cause. Anemia can be temporary or long term, and it can range from mild to severe.[2]

      Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS)

      Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS) is a condition that can cause persistent, unexplained fatigue that interferes with daily activities for more than six months.

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      This is a chronic condition with no one-size-fits-all treatment, but lifestyle changes can often help ease some symptoms of fatigue.[3]

      Diabetes

      Diabetes can cause fatigue with either high or low blood sugars. When your sugars are high, they remain in the bloodstream instead of being used for energy, which makes you feel fatigued. Low blood sugar (glucose) means you may not have enough fuel for energy, also causing fatigue.[4]

      Sleep Apnea

      Sleep apnea is a serious sleep disorder where sufferers briefly stop breathing for short periods during sleep. Most people are not aware this is happening, but it can cause loud snoring, and daytime fatigue.

      Being overweight, smoking, and drinking alcohol can all worsen the symptoms of sleep apnea.[5]

      Thyroid disease

      An underactive thyroid gland means you have too little thyroid hormone (thyroxine) in your body. This makes you feel tired and you could also put on weight and have aching muscles and dry skin.[6]

      Common lifestyle factors that can cause fatigue include:

      • Lack of sleep
      • Too much sleep 
      • Alcohol and drugs 
      • Sleep disturbances 
      • Lack of regular exercise and sedentary behaviour 
      • Poor diet 

      Common workplace issues that can cause fatigue include:

      • Shift work: Our body is designed to sleep during the night. A shift worker may confuse their circadian clock by working when their body is programmed to be asleep.
      • Poor workplace practices: This may include long work hours, hard physical labour, irregular working hours (such as rotating shifts), a stressful work environment, boredom or working alone. 
      • Workplace stress – This can be caused by a wide range of factors including job dissatisfaction, heavy workload, conflicts with bosses or colleagues, bullying, or threats to job security.
      • Burnout: This could be striving too hard on one area of your life while neglecting others, which leads to a life that feels out of balance.

      Psychological Causes of Fatigue

      Psychological factors are present in many cases of extreme tiredness and fatigue.  These may include:

      • Depression: Depression is characterised by severe and prolonged feelings of sadness, dejection and hopelessness. People who are depressed commonly experience chronic fatigue.
      • Anxiety and stress: Someone who is constantly anxious or stressed keeps their body in overdrive. The constant flooding of adrenaline exhausts the body, and fatigue sets in.
      • Grief: Losing a loved one causes a wide range of emotions including shock, guilt, depression, despair and loneliness.

      How to Tackle Constant Fatigue

      Here are 12 ways you can start tackling the causes of fatigue and start feeling more energetic.

      1. Tell The Truth

      Some people can numb themselves to the fact that they are overtired or fatigued all the time. In the long run, this won’t help you.

      To give you the best chance to overcome or eliminate fatigue, you must diagnose and tell the truth about the things that are draining your energy, making you tired or causing constant fatigue.

      Once you’re honest with yourself about the activities you’re doing in your life that you find irritating, energy-draining, and make you tired on a regular basis you can make a commitment to stop doing them.

      The help that you need to overcome fatigue is available to you, but not until you tell the truth about it. The first person you have to sell on getting rid of the causes of fatigue is yourself.

      One starting point is to diagnose the symptoms. When you start feeling stressed, overtired or just not operating at your normal energy levels make a note of:

      • How you feel
      • What time of day it is
      • What may have contributed to your fatigue
      • How your mind and body reacts

      This analysis may help you identify, understand and then eliminate very specific causes.

      2. Reduce Your Commitments

      When we have too many things on our plate personally and professionally, we can feel overstretched, causing physical and mental fatigue.

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      If you have committed to things you really don’t want to do, this causes irritability and low emotional engagement. Stack these up throughout your day and week, then your stress levels will rise.

      When these commitments have deadlines associated with them, you may be trying to cram in far too much in a short period of time.  This creates more stress and can affect your decision making ability.

      Start being realistic about how much you can get done. Either reduce the commitments you have or give yourself more time to complete them in.

      3. Get Clear On Your Priorities

      If working on your list of to-do’s or goals becomes too overwhelming, start reducing and prioritizing the things that matter most.

      Start with prioritizing just 3 things every day. When you complete those 3 things, you’ll get a rush of energy and your confidence will grow.

      If you’re trying to juggle too many things and are multi-tasking, your energy levels will drop and you’ll struggle to maintain focus.

      Unfinished projects can make you self-critical and feel guilty which drops energy levels further, creating inaction.

      Make a list of your 3 MIT (Most Important Tasks) for the next day before you go to bed. This will stop you overcommitting and get you excited about what the next day can bring.

      4. Express More Gratitude

      Gratitude and confidence are heavily linked. Just being thankful for what you have and what you’ve achieved increases confidence and makes you feel more optimistic.

      It can help you improve your sense of wellbeing, which can bring on feelings of joy and enthusiasm.

      Try starting a gratitude journal or just note down 3 things you’re grateful for every day.

      5. Focus On Yourself

      Exhaustion and fatigue can arrive by focusing solely on other people’s needs all the time, rather than worrying about and focusing on what you need (and want).

      There are work commitments, family commitments, social commitments. You may start with the best intentions, to put in your best performance at work, to be an amazing parent and friend, to simply help others.

      But sometimes, we extend ourselves too much and go beyond our personal limits to help others. That’s when constant exhaustion can creep up on us.  Which can make us more fatigued.

      We all want to help and do our best for others, but there needs to be some balance. We also need to take some time out just for ourselves to recharge and rejuvenate.

      6. Set Aside Rest and Recovery Time

      Whether it’s a couple of hours, a day off, a mini-break or a proper holiday, time off is essential to help us recover, recharge and refocus.

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      Recovery time helps fend off mental fatigue and allows us to simply kick back and relax.

      The key here, though, is to remove ourselves from the daily challenges that bring on tiredness and fatigue. Here’s how.

      Can you free yourself up completely from work and personal obligations to just rest and recover?

      7. Take a Power Nap

      When you’re feeling tired or fatigued and you have the ability to take a quick 20-minute nap, it could make a big difference to your performance for the rest of the day.

      Napping can improve learning, memory and boost your energy levels quickly.

      This article on the benefit of napping is a useful place to start if you want to learn more: How a 20-Minute Nap at Work Makes You Awake and Productive the Whole Day

      8. Take More Exercise

      The simple act of introducing some form of physical activity into your day can make a huge difference. It can boost energy levels, make you feel much better about yourself and can help you avoid fatigue.

      Find something that fits into your life, be that walking, going to the gym, running or swimming. 

      The key is to ensure the exercise is regular and that you are emotionally engaged and committed to stick with it.

      You could also walk more which will help clear your head and shift your focus away from stressful thoughts.

      9. Get More Quality Sleep

      To avoid tiredness, exhaustion and fatigue, getting enough quality sleep matters. 

      Your body needs sleep to recharge.  Getting the right amount of sleep every night can improve your health, reduce stress levels and help us improve our memory and learning skills.

      My previous article on The Benefits of Sleep You Need to Know will give you some action steps to start improving your sleep. 

      10. Improve Your Diet

      Heavy or fatty meals can make you feel sluggish and tired, whilst some foods or eating strategies do just the opposite.

      Our always on lives have us reaching for sweets or other sugary snacks to give us a burst of energy to keep going. Unfortunately, that boost fades quickly which can leave you feeling depleted and wanting more.

      On the other hand, whole grains and healthy unsaturated fats supply the reserves you can draw on throughout the day.

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      To keep energy up and steady, it’s a good idea to limit refined sugar and starches.

      Eating small meals and healthy snacks every few hours throughout the day provides a steady supply of nutrients to body and brain. It’s also important not to skip breakfast.

      Eating a balanced diet helps keep your blood sugar in a normal range and prevents that sluggish feeling when your blood sugar drops.

      11. Manage Your Stress Levels

      Stress is one of the leading causes of exhaustion and fatigue, and can seriously affect your health.

      When you have increased levels of stress at work and at home, it’s easy to feel exhausted all the time. 

      Identifying the causes of stress and then tackling the problems should be a priority. 

      My article on How to Help Anxiety When Life is Stressing You Out shares 16 strategies you can use to overcome stress.

      12. Get Hydrated

      Sometimes we can be so busy that we forget to keep ourselves fully hydrated.

      Water makes up about 60 percent of your body weight and is essential in maintaining our body’s basic functions.

      If we don’t have enough water, it can adversely affect our mental and physical performance, which leads to tiredness and fatigue.

      The recommended daily amount is around two litres a day, so to stay well hydrated keep a water bottle with you as much as possible.

      The Bottom Line

      These 12 tips can help you reduce your tiredness and feeling of fatigue.  Some will work better than others as we are all different, whilst others can be incorporated together in your daily life.

      If you’ve tried to make positive changes to reduce fatigue and you still feel tired and exhausted, it may be time to consider making an appointment with your doctor to discuss your condition.

      Featured photo credit: Annie Spratt via unsplash.com

      Reference

      [1]Oxford English Dictionary: Definition of fatigue
      [2]NHS Choices: 10 Reasons for feeling tired
      [3]Verywellhealth: What is chronic fatigue syndrome
      [4]Everyday Health: Why does type 2 diabetes make you feel tired
      [5]Mayo Clinic: Sleep apnea
      [6]Harvard Health: The lowdown on thyroid slowdown

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