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Summer in Malta is great because there are several activities that you can engage in to enjoy yourself. Whether it’s going to the beach, out for drinks, dancing at a club or attending an event, there are several opportunities for people to have fun. However, this summer is slightly different due to COVID-19. Although most of the measures have now been lifted and Malta is no longer declared in emergency state, we are still advised to be careful.

Some people might be back to their usual routines, enjoying their summer like they used to without restricting themselves as to where they go and who to meet. Other people might still feel afraid and are avoiding putting themselves at risk. How much one decides to risk depends on a variety of factors. If you are considered as a vulnerable person yourself or your loved ones are, you might decide to avoid doing certain activities to reduce the risks of getting the virus. However, this might be far from ideal if you love summer and are feeling restricted as to how much you can enjoy this season.

You may need to make some adaptations to what you are usually used to so that you can still have a great time and feel safe. The basic principle to reduce the risk of contamination is to avoid being close to people i.e. practising social distancing. If you want to go to the beach, Sunday afternoon might not be the ideal as this is usually when the beaches are busiest. You can take it as an adventure to go for an early morning swim when the beaches are still quiet. In this way you can still enjoy doing what you love and be safe as the number of people in the area would be very low. If you enjoy going out for a meal or a drink but still feel afraid to be in a restaurant/bar, be creative and set up something yourself. Ask a few friends to join you in an outdoor space, take some drinks and food with you and have an evening picnic.

Take some time to reflect on what it is that you want to do to enjoy summer and see how you can do it to still feel safe but also to have fun. Always follow the guidelines given by Health authorities as to how you can protect yourself. Remember that what can help reduce risks is if you avoid crowded places, practice social distancing and washing your hands.

Dr Marilyn Muscat is registered as an Educational Psychologist with the Health and Care Professions Council in the United Kingdom where she trained. She works with children, adolescents and their families to understand more about educational, social and emotional well-being concerns that they have and to help them improve upon their difficulties. She can be contacted on marilyn@willingness.com.mt or call us on 79291817.