Is There Such Thing as a Perfect Summer?

perfect summer

Hear me out: I love summer. I prefer wearing sandals to real shoes, I’m in a better mood when the weather is nice, and there seems to be more things to do when there’s not a foot of snow on the ground. But I can’t help but each year be overwhelmed by trying to achieve the “perfect summer”.

You see examples of achieveing the perfect summer everywhere you go. The local gym is putting up signs to encourage people to get the perfect bikini body, stores have racks of racks of cute bathing suits that will never fit you perfectly, and friends boast about elaborate beach trips they’re planning months in advance.

The countdowns begin as soon as the first warm-ish day rolls around, usually in April. You’ll see tweets like “Can’t wait for summer!” or blog posts about summer bucket lists, which include a list of 20 things that could only be achieve by someone who doesn’t have a full-time job or other commitments.

As far back as high school and as recently as now, I’ve always felt an immense pressure from society and my peers to have the perfect summer. I need to have the cutest swimsuit, go to all the weekend parties, have a stunning tan, and most importantly to our society, document all these fabulous moments via my camera and social media platforms.

The reality is that while each year I enjoy my summer, I end up going to the beach/a pool way less than I imagined. It ends up raining 3 weekends in a row, so my tan leaves little to be desired, and I don’t end up getting ‌invited to all the cool parties and gatherings that I imagined I would. Womp womp. Not to get all Debbie Downer on you guys, but maybe we’re all putting a little too much emphasis on having this perfect summer.

Sometimes I’d rather sleep in and binge-watch TV than spend a day perusing the city spending all my money on macarons and expensive dinners. Sometimes I’d rather wake up without a terrible hangover and spend a day playing basketball with my boyfriend than going to that open bar for a girl who’s not even my friend.

Summer isn’t a competition. Whoever gets the most “likes” on their photo of the ocean doesn’t win a prize. We shouldn’t feel pressured to have something fun planned each and every day just because it’s warm outside. Summer is short, and I get that everyone wants to make the most of it. I’m all for that. But pursuing the “perfect summer” is exhausting- both to do and just to watch others doing it.

What do you think? Do people around you seem to fall for this fad? Do you feel the pressure of having a perfect summer sometimes?

19 Comments

  1. For me during the Summertime I tend to be more social and that’s the time of the year where I take the most time off to enjoy a long weekend or a vacation, so I’m always excited for Summer. While I live less than 20 minutes from the beach, Summer is the only time I make an effort to go and have a nice beach day. With that said I only do these things if I feel like it, last Summer I was pretty much a lazy bum I just watched tv and ate :/ lol. I just love spending the day at the beach, have Mexican food for dinner and finish the day with a good movie.

  2. Summertime means that I actually stay up later than 10 pm. I get soooo much more done because of the daylight hours. However, I do hate it because I burn so much and I hate being sweaty. I don’t enjoy laying out because I get bored and just burn and basically give myself cancer. This year though I am looking forward to traveling more!

  3. I definitely agree, and think it applies to more than just summer. Holidays, birthdays, anything special really. I have had the “perfect” experience in my head so many times, and it never measures up. I definitely think it is better to not get crazy expectations, and enjoy what does happen.

  4. I totally see where you are coming from! I agree… and this was definitely in my mind more pressured in high school and college! High school… if you weren’t hanging out with friends every night (or if you didn’t have a boyfriend to occupy your time) you were lame, because why would you waste the beautiful summer?! Same in college… one summer I worked 6 days a week from 6 a.m. to 2 or 3 p.m. while my friends worked more restaurant jobs working 2 – 3 nights a week. So all of them had the “perfect summer” getting drunk at the pool and getting super tan all day. I love summer, but I tend to just take it one day at a time like the rest of the year lol! I just always want to have plans for the 4th and for my boyfriend’s bday!

  5. Summer is my favorite time of year so I do try to cram in as much as I possibly can to enjoy the warm weather. The summer always seems to fly by and I don’t always get to do everything I wanted to. But I always get lots of beach time!

  6. I think the appeal of summer fades when you enter the adult world. You don’t have an entire summer “break”, it doesn’t mark the end of finals, and your responsibilities don’t fade for 2-3 months. The best we can hope for is the ability to take a beach vacation! But hitting up the pool every week just isn’t realistic. At least, not for me.

  7. Your so right! Sometimes the thought of summer is better then the reality of it. I agree it isn’t a competition but I do love the idea of running out of the house wearing sandals instead off having to bundle up and face the snow!

  8. There definitely is so much pressure to have a perfect summer. Just take a look through Instagram and you’ll see tons of photos of people at the beach, at bbqs, on vacation. It always makes me feel left out. My summers consist of the same thing my winters do…. except I get to wear sandals and enjoy the warm air when I go out. The only good thing about this pressure is that it makes me focus more on going out and enjoying summer while it’s around. Otherwise, I’m pretty sure I’d be cooped up inside all season long.

  9. that is such an excellent point. people seem to want to have an ideal summer and that’s just not always going to be the case. just go out and enjoy life!

  10. I totally hear you on that!!! The truth is “nothing is perfect” (including summer)! I live in FL where summer should be nicer and longer. But that does not seem to be the case; the past couple summers were full of rains…

    So let’s all enjoy summer in our own ways!!!

  11. I always put so much pressure on myself to have the “perfect summer”, but I realize that it’s all what you make of it – and living in the moment to enjoy it. Love this post girlfriend! xx

  12. i could spend all summer in bed watching tv and cookies if I could! haha that would be my ideal! I am with ya, summer usually never turns out to be what its all cracked up to be but I love the warm weather and being able to spend time outdoors!

  13. I just want to enjoy my summer off after the year of teaching is over! My gym has a roof pool that i always think Im going to be at all the time and never actually do. Just relax and do what you want.

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