Summer is well and truly upon us! The hot season brings with it promises of relaxing vacations, drinks by the pool, sunbathing, hanging out with friends- and loss of productivity. Like a lot of things in life, summer is good in concept but less than ideal in execution. The luxury of a blank, endless summer stretched out before you like a red carpet can feel freeing at first, but after a while, it becomes boring.
The main reason for my loss of productivity is lack of stimulation. With school gone, I’m usually cooped up in the house all day without anything to do or anything to reflect on or write about. I want to write things and do things, but I lack inspiration and motivation. So I sit at home all day doing absolutely nothing.
I hope I am not alone in this struggle. Do you often find yourself spending hours aimlessly bingeing TV or Youtube? Scrolling through social media while staring blankly at the screen? Suffering from the emptiness of a vacation that doesn’t meet expectations? If so, read on for how to fix that!
How to Be Productive During Summer
#1: Get out of the house
Find a summer job or somewhere to volunteer, and put yourself out there. This will not only open your eyes to new experiences, but could also potentially look good on a university application or resume. Other than that, a change of scenery is always good for stimulating the mind, and will give you chances to network and make positive relationships with new people.
If the idea of working at a fast food restaurant or volunteering at a library is too dull, try searching for special events in your city or town. Are there any festivals or fairs coming up? Look for opportunities in places that you are interested in going to. If possible, get a few friends to tag along with you, and it will feel like you’re all just hanging out, except that you’re getting paid/contributing to the community.
If you can’t or don’t want to get a job or go volunteering, try attending festivals, art shows, concerts, fairs etc. Get involved in your local cultural events, and the payback could be greater than you imagine.
#2: Make a schedule
It will only take a few minutes to create a schedule that can serve as the guideline for your average summer day. This can seem restrictive and boring, but it’s a lot better than having literally no plans everyday for two months. Write down the approximate times you will go to bed and wake up (that will be hard to maintain, I know, just try your best), as well as times for getting fresh air and physical activity.
Tip: If you’re not the type to consult a schedule often, it may be better to set reminders in your phone.
#3: Finish your homework first
If you’ve been assigned any homework or summer reading, complete that first. That way, you can continue the rest of summer without the dark cloud of unfinished work looming over your shoulder. Procrastinating and having to cram everything in the last week before school starts will be a miserable end to your summer, so get the hard stuff all done first.
#4: Simple journaling
I’ve tried to journal before, but it never works out well because I try to cram every detail of the day onto the page, and end up with a nasty hand cramp. If you’re like me, instead of traditional spill-your-thoughts journaling, try this: everyday, write down three things you’re grateful for and three small reflections. The reflections can be small lessons you’ve learned by yourself, bits of advice from others, or moments from the day that you want to remember.
Don’t worry if you skip a day accidentally (or on purpose), just pick it back up when you can. This 3-3 type of journaling is a lot easier to keep consistent than regular journaling, and helps uplift your mood over time.
#5: Read differently
Be free of the textbooks! This summer, find books that you actually want to read. If you have a short attention span (like me), look for online articles, short stories, novellas etc.
Alternatively, you could try listening to audiobooks or podcasts. Give your eyes a break and let the knowledge trickle in through your ears instead.
#6: Redo your room/ study space
In preparation for the grueling school months ahead, you can take summer as an opportunity to revamp your room (or wherever else you do all your studying), so when school comes back around, you’ll be all set to focus. Using your precious summer to prepare for school may sound counterintuitive, but re-doing your room doesn’t have to be a chore. You can go all-in, making a vision board and making DIY furniture, or you can simply tidy the area up. Either way, it’s a good idea to freshen up your studying space, as this will help clear clutter and distractions.
#7 Take on a hobby
Summer is the perfect time to discover or build skills for a hobby. Learn something new that you are actually interested in, something that schools don’t always offer. (Ideas: photography, dance, jewelry making, archery, rock climbing) You can take classes, but if you’re not keen on spending too much money, there are also hundreds of Youtube videos and tutorials to be found online.
Good luck and may you have the willpower to make this summer a fruitful one!
It’s a bit ironic that I am trying to be productive by writing about lack of productivity. But blogging is a hobby, right? At least I’m trying to follow my own advice. So far, my summer has been spent watching a certain TV show that may or may not be featured in the July Spotlight (hint: twelve seasons and counting, lots of doctors and drama), procrastinating for far too long on social media, and then bemoaning my lack of a social life to my friends via text. So basically, regular life minus school and homework. Oh well. Summer does not have a good reputation for living up to its hype and we all know it.
If you read this entire blog post, I hope you enjoyed it and found it helpful! Just in case you somehow missed them, here is last week’s post: ‘June Spotlight‘, and my About page. I would super appreciate it if you clicked like on this blog post, or followed me here on WordPress (or both, that would be great)!
I’m curious; how is your summer going so far? If you try out any of the tips from above, please feel free to tell me how it goes!
Thank you so much for reading!