This Simple Summertime Pleasure Is My Favorite Way to End the Workday

published Jun 22, 2022
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Working from home is a privilege in so many ways. Sure, there are days where I want to get out of my house, but most of the time I’m totally content to work from my desk (or couch, or bed, or cozy chair) at home. WFH life doesn’t come without its challenges though, and the one thing that is essential for me to stay on track without distractions is to lean into my daily rituals, and to stick to a schedule. And one of the most important parts of my work-from-home schedule is the end of it. 

Since the lines between working and non-working space blurs, at least in my own home, having an end-of-day ritual is essential to signal to myself that it’s time to relax and shift gears. On an especially hard day at work last spring, I put my computer away, poured myself a glass of wine, and stepped out onto my balcony. I remember it being a beautiful evening — the sun was setting, there was a cool breeze and the wine was a special treat. Sitting outside and slowly sipping, I felt satisfied and wondered why I didn’t do this more often. My after-work ritual was born then and there. An at-home happy hour!

Now this may seem like a no-brainer, especially since happy hour was created specifically for the after-work crowd, but I’m not a huge drinker and working from home means I’m not surrounded by coworkers. I get to make this little ritual my own, and having a special drink outside at the end of the day is one of the simple pleasures I look forward to most once the weather warms up. 

Getting outdoors signals my nervous system that it’s time to relax and put work away, and I’m lucky enough to have a small outdoor balcony off my bedroom. My husband and I moved at the beginning of the year, and to my delight, discovered a cherry blossom tree right outside our bedroom. It offers our balcony shade and a little bit of privacy, and even though the blooms are gone now that it’s summer, the tree is so present in our space. We have two small patio chairs and a little table, and solar-powered string lights that line the railing, which turns our outdoor space into a cozy place to sit and relax. Investing in our balcony feels like we’ve added square footage to our home, but even if you don’t have an outdoor space, sitting on your front stoop will do the trick.

There’s also something to be said about saving a special drink for after-work hours, and it doesn’t always have to be a glass of wine or a fancy cocktail. I’m that person who usually has three drinks on the desk at all times — coffee, water, and a flavored sparkling water — but I save my glass of pink lemonade for when the day is done. To make it even more special, I pour it into a fancy glass, and even have a rose shaped ice cube, from a tray that makes the prettiest, slow-melting ice cubes. I will sometimes add a little something extra to my lemonade (my current fave is adding a bit of Haus Lemon Lavender) but for me, it’s more about making the drink unique, whether it’s alcoholic or non. And now that it’s summer, there are so many summer drinks to indulge in, whether it’s lemonade, a fruity cocktail, or a glass of rosé.

Once I have my drink and am settled in, most days I’ll take a few minutes to just sit and enjoy. Other times I’ll turn on a fun playlist or call a friend. It’s a simple 15-20 minute routine that has become a beloved end of the day ritual that rings in the summer season. I love finding small ways to elevate my everyday routines and infuse a little more joy into the simplest of things, and a special drink in a fancy glass on a summer evening is a great place to start.

This piece is part of Go Slow Month, where we’re celebrating taking your time, taking a deep breath, and taking a step back from it all. From deliberate design ideas to tips for truly embracing rest, head over here to see it all.