Written By: Joanna Roche

Wellness expert Joanna Roche shares her top tips for feeling your best this summer.

1. SELF-AWARENESS: To know yourself is to love yourself
Take the time to do an internal inventory and explore the quality of your life and relationships. Are the things you spend time on meaningful or are they old habits? Remind yourself that change is the only constant in our lives; what once served you may not now, so choose to let go of old stories and patterns. For a day make the commitment to keep your self- talk kind and gentle—show yourself the same kindness you show others.

2. SELF-CARE: This is not a luxury, this is a necessity
Drink lots of water, move your body, listen to music, take a hot bath and practice gratitude. Cultivate the skill of being in the present and experiencing what is right in front of you. Develop rituals that soothe your body and soul and truly connect you to the self.

3. MEDITATION: Flex the biggest muscle in your body, your brain
Developing a meditation or breathwork practice is the easiest and most effective way to reduce stress and engage your brain. Start small—a five-minute daily practice of simply breathing and observing your thoughts will soon turn into a daily ritual and serve to center your day with intention. Read Wherever You Go, There You Are by Jon Kabat-Zinn, the father of mindfulness.

4. PLANT MEDICINE: Our food is also our medicine
Eat local organic food. Dump the processed, sugar-filled, mass-marketed GMO food in the supermarket. Go to the farmers market, start a container or backyard garden, go to the fish market and take CBD. Learn to love the taste of real food that is in season and not treated with chemicals. Watch the movie The Biggest Little Farm; it will make you want a garden!

5. CONNECTION: Love makes the world go around
Focus on the relationships that feed you. It’s just as easy to water the flowers as it is to water the weeds. Hold your children and loved ones dear—life is precious and short. Read To Bless the Space Between Us by Irish poet John O’Donohue and let his magical words inspire the love in your heart.

6. NATURE: Is the perfect system
By design, nature connects to all of our senses and provides the rhythm of life. The cardinal sings his song, the tall pine sways in the breeze, the waves crash, the mountains reflect in the clear blue of the mountain lake, the sun and the moon shine bright. Be in nature as much as you can—it is proven to reduce anxiety and depression, boost the immune system and promote creativity and happiness. Developing a strong connection to nature is a true spiritual and deeply grounding experience.

7. EARTH CARE: Be active in the protection of our natural resources
You can make a difference—be informed, participate in our community and make your voice heard. Teach your children to respect the earth and be the change you want to see in the world. Our ecosystem on Nantucket is delicate and requires us to protect it from overdevelopment, to recycle our waste and to protect the ocean from plastic and noise pollution. Read Drawdown: The Most Comprehensive Plan Ever Proposed to Reverse Global Warming, edited by Paul Hawken, for an understandable perspective on climate change.

Joanna Roche is the executive director of GSN Planet, a non-profit trade association serving the spa, wellness and hospitality communities in support of a sustainable future. Her mission is to inspire wellness, activism and sustainability as both a personal and business practice. Roche is a certified vibrational sound therapist specializing in integrative healing experiences, is trained in mind mapping and emotional intelligence, and teaches at Graceline Institute. As host of BalancingACK on 89.5FM, Nantucket’s NPR station, Roche highlights the people and practices making the world a better place. Her favorite job, though, is being Mom to her sons and cheering at their Whaler games.

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