If there’s any time of year that’s most appropriate for embracing the real you, it’s got to be July.

You spent the spring and early summer renewing yourself and preparing for growth. Now it’s time to take everything you’ve learned about yourself since winter’s end and take action so you can live up to your fullest potential this summer.

To be free spirited means to be uninhibited by stress and worry. It's about living  your life happily on your own terms and independent of other people’s opinions and beliefs.

This July, ask yourself how you can be more free spirited in your practice and in your everyday life. Here are three tips to help get you started.

Break the Rules

We all grow up learning that there are certain “rules” that we should follow without question. Now’s your chance to start questioning them.

Whether you’ve been led to believe that you should look a certain way in a bathing suit or that you should be skilled enough already to strike a certain yoga pose, take a mindful step back from whatever it is that may be limiting you in any way and look at it from other perspectives. You may find that when you change your perspective, the complete opposite belief seems just as viable as what you believed all along.

You get to make the rules you want to live by. If the ones you’ve been following haven’t been working for you, you don’t have to ask permission to break them.

Make Time for Play

Free spirited yogis know not to take their practice or their everyday lives too seriously all the time. While there’s a certain time and place to be serious, there’s also a time and a place to be playful.

If your practice is starting to feel more like a chore than a joy, do something different that taps into your playful inner child. Even if that means taking a break from yoga altogether to spend time dancing or swimming, then you should try doing it.

Play will allow you to explore your heart’s desires while helping you let go of any expectation of results. When you play, you get to do an activity simply for the pleasure of doing it, which can be a really nice change from the everyday stress that comes from constantly working toward goal achievement.

If It’s Not Happening Now, Don’t Worry About It

Freeing your spirit means freeing yourself from the past and from the future. It’s certainly easier said than done, but the effort is worth it.

You can start with a daily mindfulness meditation practice. Pick a simple activity like watering the flowers in your yard, walking down the road, or brushing your teeth and focus on your sensations as you allow thoughts to flow through your mind in the background.

Learning to become present will free up a lot of energy so you can be fully engaged in whatever’s happening in the moment. The past may have brought you to this moment and the future may be where you’re headed next, but what you choose to think, feel, and do in the present is what really matters.

Have fun embracing your free spirit this summer and doing what you love most!