10 Simple Habits to Foster This Summer

10 Simple Habits to Foster This Summer
Choose activities you can easily incorporate into your life. (NDAB Creativity/Shutterstock)
Barbara Danza

Summertime is an opportune time to focus on making improvements in yourself and your life. The days are longer, the schedule is more relaxed, and there is time and space to review, reflect, and retool the areas of your life that could use some refreshing.

When it comes to making improvements, often the key is to focus on habits. Here are 10 simple habits to foster this summer.

Make Your Bed

In his famous talk, Navy Seal Adm. William McRaven stated, “If you want to change the world, start off by making your bed.” Making your bed starts the day right and sets the tone for continued success throughout. It instantly improves the state of your bedroom and takes less than two minutes.

Move Every Day

When you can find simple habits that produce a ripple effect throughout your life, you’re maximizing the impact of your efforts. Moving your body every day is one of those powerful habits that can affect the other aspects of your life.
Choose activities and systems that are easy to incorporate into your life. Perhaps you’ll wear a step tracker and aim for a certain number of steps each day. Perhaps you’ll leave your sneakers at the door and go for a walk before work each day or after dinner. Perhaps you’ll create a playlist of upbeat songs that encourage you to dance about your house while you clean. Perhaps you’ll play your favorite sport, go to the gym, or design a workout at home you’ll stick to. Whatever you do, move your body each day for increased energy, an improved emotional state, and better health.

Love Your Outfit

When was the last time you refreshed your wardrobe? The past few years have encouraged a culture of sweatpants and staying home. This summer may be a great time to add some pieces to your closet that you can wear to feel a bit more put together. When you feel great in your clothes, you’ll be more apt to show up for life and take on new opportunities. Whatever the day calls for, make it a habit to love your outfit each day.

Set Up a Declutter Station

Summer is a great time to clear the decks. Set up a station of boxes or bags in your home where you’ll toss items to be donated, sold, or thrown away. When one container fills, take it away and replace it with another. By the end of the summer, you’ll find your home easier to clean and more inspiring to live in.

Reduce Your Screen Time

The last thing you want to do is look back on summer and realize you spent a giant chunk of your summer hours staring at your phone. Set a screen time strategy in place for yourself and your family before summer begins. Keeping devices tucked away in a central location most of the time helps reduce their use.

Playing music in the home can have the effect of diminishing the pull of the screens. Consider making a rule of only looking at your phone between certain hours of the day. You can also use tracking and blocking tools on digital devices to monitor and control their usage.

Real life happens off-screen. Set those things aside and enjoy summer.

Stock Your Kitchen

Summer is usually a time when routines and schedules change. With that, diet and nutrition can sometimes fly out the window.
Prepare in advance for the new rhythm of your days by ensuring that your kitchen is stocked with the healthy options you and your family will need. Perhaps this is a season where more grab-and-go snacks would be helpful, more salad fixings at hand might be great, and some easy items to grill might be good to have on hand. Finally, make sure you have a routine to re-up your supply each week.

Choose Relationships Over To-Do Lists

The most ambitious among us may see the summer blank slate as an opportunity to get more work done or tackle huge projects. While there likely is an opportunity here to take on something like that, balance that with the opportunity to spend time with the people who are most important to you. Play, lounge, talk, gather—spend quality time with your loved ones this summer. You don’t get a prize at the end for the number of boxes you checked.

Soak Up the Sun

Spending time in the sunshine is one of the many simple pleasures summer has to offer. Get that vitamin D and spend time outside in the fresh air each day.


The benefits of journaling are many, and summertime is a great time to begin that habit, if it’s not something you do already. Simply procure a lovely notebook and some fun pens, and spend a few minutes each day jotting down your thoughts, capturing your ideas, doodling for fun, or even pasting in some pictures or keepsakes.
The act of reflection and self-examination and the practice of allowing your thoughts to materialize on the page can be therapeutic, inspiring, and rejuvenating. You’ll gain clarity and motivation, and it can bring you great peace as well. There’s no right or wrong way to do it—just start.


Whether lounging at the pool or the beach or curled up in your favorite spot at home, summertime is a great time to enjoy great books. Choose the ones you’ve always wanted to read, ones that will inspire you to improve, and ones that will enliven your spirit. Utilize your library, local bookstores, and online resources, and make time each day to read.
Barbara Danza is a contributing editor covering family and lifestyle topics. Her articles focus on homeschooling, family travel, entrepreneurship, and personal development. She contributes children’s book reviews to the weekly booklist and is the editor of “Just For Kids,” the newspaper’s print-only page for children. Her website is BarbaraDanza.com
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