I recently went with a good friend and her sister to see Olivia Wilde’s Booksmart, and all three of us walked out of the theater having thoroughly enjoyed our experience. Booksmart, as with all the great high-school movies before it, has a healthy dose of exaggeration incorporated for some seriously good laughs, and I found myself resonating and empathizing with the characters as they navigate the precipice of one of life’s major transitions. As with most transitions, things are confusing, messy, and bittersweet but made just a little easier with the help of good friends. The portrayal of female friendship is a real strength of this movie and an encouragement for all of us ladies to continue to shift more toward building each other up rather than viewing each other as competition to take down.
The gals in Booksmart come to the end of their high school careers realizing that perhaps they have over-emphasized academics over good ol’ fashioned fun. And while I would always advocate for giving ourselves true comfort (and legal pursuits) over numbing, there is something to be said for the benefits of aiming for more than a little school-life balance. I work every day with amazingly talented, intelligent girls who have big goals, and more than anything, I want to support them in going the distance to progress toward those goals in the long term. This is a great deal more difficult without a good, solid dose of self-care and cultivating a little joy along the way.
I was also struck by several scenes in which the main characters exchange beautifully supportive and positive affirmations to each other. I found myself thinking, “Oh, man. I wish the girls I work with could work towards saying these things not only to each other, but also to themselves.” My clients are capable of some incredible contributions to their lives and their communities when they lean into their inherent worthiness and talk to themselves like they talk to their friends.
I hope that this summer whether you are at home, camp, or the beach, you are able to soak up the rays and enjoy some rest and relaxation. Here are a few ideas for some summer fun in Houston: