Update: it’s already March. Spring is almost here, and the semester will be halfway over before we know it. So what’s next? Well, in just a little over two months, summer will be here. And while the majority of the starving college student population will be working, investing hours in that next macchiato or day trip to the beach, we also want adventures and opportunities. One of the hardest tasks for us can be to narrow down what we want to do over the summer. Maybe you’re looking for an internsip, volunteer opportunities, or summer classes to get ahead. Maybe you want to explore some cities or take a road trip with your friends. Maybe you just want to start some good habits, like going to the gym, reading more books, or keeping a budget.
These are just a few of the countless ideas I’ve come up with, and I can only imagine how many more ideas are out there. It can be exciting to think about how much potential there is this summer. But as we all know, it’s rare that we get through the whole slew of activities on our lists, let alone half of them. Why is this?
I think it’s because we need to come at the summer with an eye for efficiency. We need to look at the summer and be intentional about what we do not want to do as much. While this perspective might seem pessimistic, I would counter that it evens out the tendency to be overly-optimistic. When you can be realisitc about how much time you truly have, you will finally start to accomplish what you want to do.
What don’t you want to do with your time this summer? Here are a few ideas of how you can save your time this summer. Don’t:
- Watch hours on hours of Netflix.
- Sleep in till 12 on the regular.
- Spend the morning watching snapchat stories, exploring Instagram, watching YouTube videos, Pinning, etc.
- Stay up late texting or texting all throughout the day.
- Go into every week without a plan of what you want to accomplish.
- Take advantage of every opportunity for fun- spontaneous food dates, shopping, random adventures, etc. Quick clarification: I know it’s hard for some of my friends to believe, but I love spontaneity. Have fun on a whim. Just be careful of it becoming a habit that gets you out of doing what you planned on doing that day, like taking a run or working an extra shift.
- Hang out with the same people all the time. I can’t speak for every friend group, but such over-exposure to one set of people can really eat up your time by making you dependent on one another. Even though sleeping over at someone’s house for multiple days consecutively might sound like an adventure, it can eventually be a hindrance from being consistent with what you really wanted to do that week.
- Multi-task. If you started to clean your room, don’t begin working on your resume and calling your friend at the exact same time. Before you know it, 2 o’clock has passed and you still haven’t completely finished what you originally intended to do.
- Wait till noon to get to your tasks. If at all possible, schedule doctor appointments, work, or your own goals as earlier on in the day. If this means you get less sleep, then take a nap in the afternoon. At the least, you’ll have more energy for going out in the evening.
- Be lazy. Don’t make exceptions for yourself. Yes, summer is a time for relaxation, but it’s still life. The “treat yourself” catch phrase can only go so far before it starts to become a lifestyle and not just a treat.
These are just a few ideas of what you can attempt to eliminate from your summer. Whatever you want to get done this summer, just realize that you probably can get it done. My professor always used to tell us that the kids who get As on his test are not the smartest-they just know how to study in advance and study well. The same applies to our summers. If we put in some hard work to eliminate the distractions, we will have more time to do what we really want to do.