Want to be productive this summer? Start here

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Want to be productive this summer? Start here

Amy Paine, Staff Writer

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Staying productive is difficult enough during the school year, but during the summer, without the regular schedules and reinforced due dates, it can be a struggle to keep up. Of course, there’s not a lot of homework over the summer, but to those who have a project or a hobby to work on—a summer class, writing, or working on art, for example—it can seem like all that time you thought you’d have is slipping away. Here are a few tips and tricks to keep up with your hobbies this summer and come back next year with a few goals actually achieved.

1. Stay Motivated: This seems obvious, but it can be difficult to remember the end goal when you’re putting in so much work into a large project, especially when you don’t see any concrete progress. Keep the finished product or the final results in mind while you work. Writing a transition scene is boring and tedious, but the story you have at the end of the summer will be worth it—and the same goes for anything else you’re working on. Just remember why you wanted to work so hard in the first place, then sit down and get to work.

2. Work a Little Bit Every Day: The key words here are “a little bit.” If you try to learn a week’s worth of material for a class in a single day, you’re probably not going to remember all of it. Similarly, if you try to complete your whole project too fast, you’ll most likely get frustrated and give up. Consistency is important, though, so try to work towards your goal daily (or as close to it as you can get).

3. Help a Friend: The buddy system isn’t just a way of keeping track of all the elementary students on a field trip. Find a friend with a similar goal and work together to make sure you’re both keeping up. Personally, I’m pretty bad at holding myself accountable for work without a strict deadline, so having someone else to check up on me can help solve that problem. Plus, you’ll get to see someone else’s process from start to finish, which can inspire you towards a new goal.

4. Take a Social Media Break: Social media is a good way to waste time instead of working on that art portfolio you’ve been trying to round out all year. No matter how many inspiration posts you like on Instagram, they won’t help you until you get offline and put those tips into practice. In addition, social media often fosters comparison of your work to others, and that’s rarely a good sign for productivity. Of course, not many people are going to delete all their accounts and stay offline all summer, but taking a few days or even a few hours without the distractions and pressure of the internet can provide valuable time and amazing ideas.

5. Share Your Work: One of my least favorite feelings happens when I share my work: watching someone react to something you created, not knowing what they’ll think or how they might interpret what you’ve made. Sharing work, especially when you feel a personal connection to your achievements, can be hard, but it’s worth it in the end. Knowing that other people are excited about what you’re doing can help you keep going even when you want to destroy everything you’ve done so far and never attempt any sort of work ever again. Pick the right people to share with, though—negativity won’t help you here.

No matter what your goal for the summer is, there’s plenty of time to achieve it (provided you set a realistic goal in the first place). Work hard and don’t give up, even if you feel like whatever you’re doing is pointless. We here at The Wind-Up wish you good luck; we can’t wait to see what you do this summer!