Summer Wellbeing

Four Scents Team


Traditionally, Summer is the time for adventure – the warmer, longer days inspire us to live a little differently, whatever shape or form this may take. It could be something as small as a shift in routine, or as big as a road trip somewhere completely new.

What experiences await you this summer?

A word of wisdom we liked and want to share is “Your experience will be dependent on the way you choose to receive it”.


We often tend to underestimate the benefits of anticipatory joy in the run up to our change of scenery or a big day out. We are wired for anticipation, having the capacity to form accurate expectations about the future so we can make better predictions about it, as part of increasing chances of survival. More than just a cognitive process though, the strong positive emotions that anticipation produce release dopamine, known as the “motivation molecule” that help us focus and achieve our goals. It plays a significant role in the brain’s reward system. It is said that the enjoyment we get from anticipation might also be an important component of life satisfaction, helping to improve our wellbeing. It also creates discipline, teaching us that if we can be patient, a greater experience or reward is upon us. Building up with this sense of excitement and optimism helps boost our resilience; when we know we have something to look forward to, we can navigate the dreary or tough days leading up to the event better. At Four Scents, anticipation is taking shape in the form of an exciting new product launch! We have been spending the colder days crafting something new to complement our existing range; after all the hard work, we are excited and proud to be launching it this summer – watch this space…

Doing Nothing

The experience that does us the world of good, but too often downplayed, is simply taking a break and doing nothing. Yes, you heard us right! When we allow our minds to relax and rest, they return to what neuroscientists called the “default network”. This is where the brain sorts out the new information we’ve recently received and tries to put it into context with what we already know. As a result, this network is integral to learning, insight and creativity. So, there’s a huge benefit in allowing our minds to wander in new directions – reflective thought is also crucial to making progress and better decision making. The Dutch have coined the term “Niksen” - the art of doing nothing. While it was originally coined as a dismissive phrase for laziness, it is now being celebrated as a practice to beat stress and burnout. This doesn’t mean anything screen-based however; this is an intentional practice that could take your preferred shape. It could be letting your mind wander as you listen to music, wash the dishes or simply sit still. The length of your break is up to you – if you can’t cope with the thought of taking too much time out, little “brain breaks” of a minute or two every hour significantly helps to boost focus and creativity. Or a treat in the form of a relaxing soak, taking in the beautiful aromas of our Summer Radiance fragrance and benefitting from the soothing, restorative Himalayan Salts is a brain break at its best.


As the schools break up for the holidays, who says that play is just for children? Somewhere, at some point, we are given negative messages about this and end up taking life a little too seriously. There’s something about the summer that helps us to realise that life is a gift and there’s so much good that comes from a spirit of adventure and a sense of playfulness. It can release endorphins, creating a positive feeling in the body and can temporarily mask pain – essential to building grit and resilience. Activities such as puzzles, board games and other fun pursuits that challenge the brain help to improve brain function and memory. In including others, sharing laughter and fun aids in fostering compassion, trust and empathy with them. Playfulness can also be a state of mind, helping to break the ice, form new friendships and help take the edge off stressful situations. In a relaxed and playful mood, it’s also easier to learn new things, stimulating your imagination. In turn, this helps in adaptation and problem solving. Best of all, it keeps you feeling energised and young, boosting vitality and overall health.


The Great Outdoors

Being outdoors more, there’s a plethora of information about sun exposure and a lot of it can feel frightening. But here’s the good news – we need it in our lives! This is our primary source of vitamin D, one of the nutrients we are most commonly deficient in. We need it for many aspects of physical health as well as our mental health; it’s much more critical for our wellbeing than most of us realise. The body can store vitamin D for months, so if we get sufficient sun exposure in the summer, it can help us get through less of it in winter. The key is to not get sunburned – eating foods that help reduce inflammation, such as oily fish, flaxseed, leafy greens, tomatoes and berries help reduce sun sensitivity, while protecting your skin by building up sun exposure gradually and covering up the head and shoulders all help to enjoy the sun responsibly. The timings are different for everyone – factors such as skin tone, health history, age, where you live will impact what’s best; the general consensus is 5 - 15 minutes. The benefits are numerous, however. It can help maintain strong bones, protect from Seasonal Affective Disorder, strengthen the immune system, promote healthy eye function, boost serotonin (improving mood and helping you to be calm and focused), regulate melatonin, which is critical to helping you sleep.



Talking of sleep, the power of a nap is gaining ground. Not just the preserve of Mediterranean countries or a drowsy summer afternoon, napping can be just the boost you need. Staying up later on the longer days and warmer weather affecting the quality of our sleep might call for a top-up during the day. The relaxation that comes from a nap can lift your mood and release stress; help store your memories and draw connections between the things you learn; lessening the effects of brain fog; help lower blood pressure; helps the body restore its natural defences and boost creativity. For those of us familiar with the post-lunch slump, it can be a sign that a nap is exactly what’s needed to improve performance. The beauty of a nap is that 10 to 20 minutes is optimum. Any longer, and it causes grogginess known as sleep inertia – and it’s harder to transition back to work. The best time for a nap is early afternoon – 8 hours before bedtime, interestingly, has been shown to help improve night time sleep. Why not create a wind-down atmosphere with a Summer Radiance candle? Featuring essential oils of Neroli, Rose and Tuberose, they are optimal in aiding deep relaxation, helping you to drift off. Creating a restful environment in a quiet place at a comfortable temperature with no distractions optimises the benefits. Don’t forget to set an alarm though!


Mini Adventures

Better rested, we return our focus to adventure. Usually associated with a far-flung location and something out of the ordinary, what if we choose to receive the outdoors right where we are as a location for mini-adventures? Having a change of scenery in a new location, we’re more drawn to exploring the area – while our we don’t take the time to be a tourist in our own towns. Seeing our local area through fresh eyes can be invigorating and encourage us to become more mindful. Taking the unfamiliar route forces our brains to pay attention, and pausing to take in new details sparks curiosity. What are you beginning to notice? And what element do you want to look more closely at? Putting the phone on silent and going without a goal brings us into the present. Taking this a bit further and finding a hiking trail does wonders for summer wellbeing. It stimulates the parasympathetic nervous system (rest & digest), strengthens bones, improves heart health, brain health, balance, and mental health. New trails lend that sense of adventure too. Exercise outdoors can take different shapes, though – swimming at a local pool or lidos (being on or in water can be one of the most effective ways to reduce stress and anxiety) or gardening and mowing the lawn (both physical and mental benefits) take us off the hamster wheel and into the moment. The botanicals featured in our Room Mists and Reed Diffusers bring the outdoors in with soothing mandarin and captivating florals, prolonging the feeling of optimism that the mini-adventure brings.

Simple Pleasures

Exploring a local farmer’s market can bring change into your routine, encouraging you to try some new foods and incorporate healthier options into your diet. It’s an opportunity to learn what foods are local to your area and the grower can give you the best advice on the best way to enjoy the produce. A mini-adventure ending in a picnic is an ideal way to make the most of your new-found food discoveries and the great outdoors; it also serves as a great way to switch up your daily routine. All too often, we picture a fancy spread and can’t face the faff, but how about keeping it simple? It can serve as a pleasant break in day to look forward to or an excuse to catch up with friends. It can make a big difference to your mood, lowering stress and the social connection may help us maintain our thinking skills better in later life. Taking time over our food helps us to digest our food better as well as gaining all the vitamin D-related benefits we mentioned earlier. If going it alone, taking a good book along is a superb way to switch off. Reading is a form of meditation; losing yourself in the story and connecting with the words helps your breath naturally to fall into a slower, calmer rhythm.

What adventures await you this summer?

How will you choose to receive each experience?

Whatever shape they might take, we hope that this light and joyful season will bring relaxation, revitalisation and a renewed perspective.


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