By Skills

It’s now June and we have reached the halfway mark of the year. How do your goals look?

Maybe you haven’t started or you’ve fallen off the track.

Now is the perfect time to create a summer personal development plan!

Why to Start a Summer Personal Development Plan

For most people that grow up experiencing 4 seasons a year, there is one that can’t be beat.

Summer.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m a fall baby and it will always be my favorite season but there is something special about summer.

The increased daylight and warm temperatures make getting out and moving around easier. The extra dose of vitamin D seems to make everyone happier and somehow it seems possible to get more done.

These simple reasons are exactly why it’s a great idea to take advantage and create a summer personal development plan.

Where to Start

When creating your summer personal development plan, it is best to start at the same place I recommend starting all goals. That is by breaking it up into the 8 main life categories: health, relationships, finance, career or business, personal and spiritual growth, recreation and fun, environment, and service and contribution.

If you so choose, you can choose to make plans for all, skip some, or break some of them up further if it makes more sense to you.

Questions for Your Summer Personal Development Plan

When trying to plan ahead it is helpful to have thought prompts to be more creative and intentional.

Ask yourself these questions in regards to the eight life categories I’ve included below (health, relationships, finance, career or business, personal and spiritual development, recreation and fun, environment, and service or contribution):

  • On a scale from 1-10 where am I currently at in these categories?
  • Where do I want to be on a scale from 1-10?
  • What did I do last summer?
  • What can you do to help you follow your joy?
  • Are there sacrifices you need to make in order to accomplish this?
  • When will you start?

It’s important to remember that summer is only about a quarter of the year, so don’t put so much pressure on yourself that your goals and plans feel impossible.

These should contribute to your big picture goals. They can be challenging but also make it as fun as you want to. It is your life!

Now onto the categories.

Here are some ideas for each.

Health

Health is a very common goal to keep in check during the summer.

This includes diet, exercise, and dealing with any chronic pains or illnesses. Sometimes this means sacrificing short term happiness (like not eating that second cupcake) for the big picture of your health.

Take advantage of the fresh food in summer by incorporating more fresh fruit and vegetables into your diet. One idea might be to go to the farmers market and try a vegetable you’ve never seen before.

Exercise also tends to be easier with increased daylight hours and warmer temperatures. If you’ve wanted to try your hand at waking up earlier to get a workout in before work, there is no time like the summer to start that habit.

Other ideas could be biking instead of driving to work, taking the stairs instead of the elevator, or trying out , a 4 minute intense intervals workout technique.

Relationships

Maintaining healthy relationships comes in many different forms.

You can prioritize maintaining strong bonds with family, friends, coworkers or work on making new friends!

This is also a good time to reassess toxic relationships in your life. Is there someone in your life not serving you and bringing your energy down? I might be time to wish them the best on their journey.

Use this summer by taking some time to bond with your kids, take a weekend trip with the girls, or even develop a better relationship with yourself.

Finance

What can you do to create a healthier financial life this summer?

It could be as simple as creating or reevaluating your budget and creating a plan to stick to it.

How will you set yourself up to be more financially successful this summer than you were 6 months ago?

Don’t expect to become a millionaire over night or get rid of all your debt in 3 months but set up the foundation that will get you there.

It could be as simple as starting by cutting down your food budget by cooking more meals at home instead of eating out or being more mindful of online shopping.

I use Ibotta, a cash-back app for all my grocery shopping. You can find items with available rebates, take a picture of your receipt and get money back as a giftcard or to your PayPal account. Sign up now to check it out.

There is also Rakuten (formerly Ebates), another cashback tool. Online shopping through Rakuten allows you to earn a percentage of your purchase back. If you sign up through my referral link, you’ll automatically get $10!

Small ways like these can also add up and counteract some of your expenses.

Career or Business

What can you do in your summer personal development plan to get further along in your career? Will you finally start taking the steps to creating your own business or side hustle?

Are you looking for a promotion or more responsibilities? It could be as simple as asking.

The best way is to over-provide in value, not time. This requires a whole new mindset. You must shift from a “time economy” to a “value economy”. This means focusing on pain points you can over deliver on instead of focusing on how much time you put in.

When you start to go all-in like this, you are able to create your own opportunities.

If you’re a teacher or someone lucky enough to have the summers off, maybe now is the perfect time to start a side hustle and earn an extra income.

I took the course Blog With a Full Time Job to figure out how to manage my side hustles. The course specifically focuses on building an internet-based side hustle but I’ve been able to apply some of the business strategies to my professional life, as well as my in-person side hustles as well!

If you have any interest in starting an internet-based side-hustle, I highly recommend Blog With a Full Time Job. If you have any questions about the course, contact me, and ask away!

Personal and Spiritual Development

I am a personal development blogger and Mindset Coach, so I am very passionate about this topic. You are reading a summer personal development planning post after all.

I think it is so cool that you can do introspective work and use different techniques to learn more about yourself.

If this is new to you, use the technique from above. Ask yourself where you currently feel with these 8 categories. Now, ask yourself where you want to be.

Once you create your summer plan and start exercising your personal development muscle, you can apply it to the bigger picture. What are you plans 6 months from now? 1 year from now? 3 years from now? Instead of the future being scary, planning like this can make it really exciting!

If you’re looking to deepen your spiritual practice, add time in your schedule for prayer or meditation. Even waking up 15 minutes earlier could be sufficient in the beginning or add it into your evening routine.

Recreation and Fun

May your summer be filled with recreation and fun!

Of all of the personal development planning to do this summer, this category might be the easiest to plan for and one that might incorporate some of the other categories.

My biggest takeaway here is: PLAN TIME FOR FUN!

If you’re like most of my readers that I hear from, you are well-deserving and long overdue for some recreation.

Planning for fun helps to give you back some of your energy and refill your cup so you can better show up for those that you love.

Environment

Environment pertains to where you spend the most time, like where you work and live.

When it comes to your environment, maintence is important to keep in mind. Goals like “keep kitchen clean” are too general and need to be more specific.

A better plan would be “do dishes immediately after dinner” or “wipe off countertops after cooking”.

Since it’s summer, maybe you want to maintain some plants or a garden. Again, be specific. You will need to do daily things like water and weed it.

Service and Contribution

Lastly, service and contribution allows you to make your mark in your community.

This could be volunteering time or money to causes and organizations that align with your values.

It is ok to think outside of the box with this one if making committments to volunteering at organizations doesn’t work for you.

Instead could you committ to spending a couple of evenings this summer cleaning up trash at your local park? Is there a friend that needs help with a renovation project?

Service and contribution doesn’t need to be anything grand, it is simply doing something that bigger than yourself.

Set up a System to Implement Your Summer Personal Development Plan

Once all your goals and ideas are written out, it’s time to develop a plan of implementation.

When will you do all this? After work? Will your weekends be looking a little more busy?

Here are some of my favorite tools to do this:

  • Google Calendar for all of my long term planning. Everything I want to do gets scheduled on here so I have it to constantly look at
  • Schedule results. When filling out your calendar, remember to have your intended results in mind. This helps give all your actions meaning and makes planning easier

When you’re new, it isn’t necessary to spend a ton of time figuring out your perfect system right away. You will learn more about your working style as you go along!

Your Summer Personal Development Plan

You may notice when creating your own plan that changing one category will positively affect the other.

This is no accident.

Life is messy, it doesn’t stay boxed into these 8 broad categories. There is spill-over and give and take to each of them.

This is why it is so important to not get discouraged if you slip up in one.

Even if you slip up in one, as long as you’re making progress in another, it is likely you’re actually progressing in others too.

Most important in your summer personal development plan (or any goal setting exercise) is to give yourself credit where it is due!

Do you need to celebrate every time you check something off your to-do list? No. But when you truly push yourself past your comfort zone, you’ll know.

I’m rooting for you!

Bonus Reading to Jumpstart Your Plan

I believe reading is the easiest way to up-level and is an excellent thing to incorporate into your summer personal development plan.

Here are some of my top picks:

Here are some of my best blog posts to help you with your planning:

The post How to Start Your Summer Personal Development Plan appeared first on Lovely and Green.

This content was originally published here.

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