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8 Ways to Ensure a Productive Summer and Still Have Fun

With BBQs and pool parties as constants, summer is in full effect. Whether you're a graduate student or a mother-of-three whose children are home from school, it's important to ensure a productive summer season. During any time of the year, it's hard to keep focus on your goals and routine when there are lots of distractions around you. Here's 8 creative tips to keep up with your summer goals in 2019.

1. Don't Set Your Goals in Stone

Before we start planning your goals for the summer, let's take a step back. The plan is to stay productive while still enjoying the longer days and warmer nights. We want to set productive, yet realistic goals for you this summer. Don't overwhelm yourself with "have tos" and "shoulds"... let me explain what I mean by that. Nothing will kill your summer happiness more than constantly saying "I wish I could go to the bonfire but I should go to the gym instead."

Pro tip: Instead of committing to a gym visit Monday-Friday, set a goal of going to the gym three times a week. That way when you get an unexpected invite to a bonfire on a Tuesday night, you can still make an appearance without feeling guilty for not hitting the gym.

2. Try to Keep Your Typical Sleep Patterns

Whether you're vacationing by the lake or just enjoying the longer nights in your backyard, it's important to try to keep your regular sleeping patterns. Keeping up with your regular routine will help a lot with your productivity during the day. Your body and mind strive off routine, especially when it comes to sleep. On those days you might have slept in a little later than usual, try to work out your body and mind a little extra so you'll start to feel tired around your normal bedtime.

Another great way to trick your body that you're tired to maintain a night time routine. This can look like a regular skin care routine you perform every night, a nightly cup of herbal tea and/or a walk around the block with your partner or friend.

3. Schedule a Specific Time for Work

If you're on summer break from school or just wanting to enjoy your time away from your 9-5, sometimes it's hard to make sure you're getting your work done. An easy way to make sure you're staying productive during the summer is to set a specific time each day or every week to spend on working/checking emails. When you're enjoying your summer, you don't want your subconscious telling you that you should be working. If you set a specific time to get work done, this eliminates that irritating voice in your head convincing you that you aren't being productive. This tip will also stop you from getting carried away with work once you get started.

4. Challenge Your Intellectual Health

Once you start taking weekend trips and relaxing by the water, it's easy to fall into a summer slumber. After an unpredictable spring, it’s common to want to spend your days outside enjoying the sun. However, don't forget to challenge your mind! Think about signing up for a new class or trying to master a new skill. Summer is the best time to pick up something new.

Jot down some ideas...

-What needs improving around the house?

-Is there a new language you're trying to learn?

-Any skill that you could perfect before the holidays come up?

5. Stimulate Your Muscles

Trying a new exercise routine is a great way to stay excited about keeping up with your fitness goals. When you move your body is new ways, you will stimulate and exercise your muscles in new ways! Your muscles thrive off changing up your rhythm and tempo; because of this, changing your exercise routine is will be a great way to ensure an enjoyable and productive workout.

Be cautious of the fact that the temperature is higher, therefore you will get dehydrated faster. Stay hydrated and cool and be sure to eat the fruits and vegetables in season!

6. Keep Up with Your Social Well-being

Now that your friends and family have some more free time and more willing to use some of their vacation days, be sure to improve your social well-being this summer. Reconnect with an old group of friends or extended family you might not have seen since the last family get-together.

7. When You're on Vacation, Be on Vacation

Speaking of taking time off... remember to change your mindset once you're on vacation. How can you let go of reality and focus on your experiences? Start by setting yourself up for success. Before your vacation, send out reminders to colleagues, friends and family that you are taking a physical and mental vacation.

Make sure before leaving to tie up all your loose ends:

-Set boundaries for work and personal for what situations you should be contacted for

-Set boundaries for how you should be contacted when said situations came up

-Set up backup contacts for certain non-emergency situations

8. Set Yourself Up to Experience and Be Spontaneous

What do you have planned this summer that you will truly get lost in? Sometimes, the most productive thing you can do for your mind is to let go completely. When you allow yourself to get lost in a place or project, you can reset your mindset and energy level to get productive tasks done. Do you have big plans for this summer to travel and get lost in a different culture? Or maybe an activity that allows you to forget about everything else around you.

As productive as you'd like you summer to be, you still need to set aside some time to be spontaneous. As ironic as "planned spontaneity" sounds, it’s crucial to your overall well-being. More than we'd like to admit, we forget that we shouldn't live to just pay bills, keep up your GPA, or whatever it is that keeps you up at night. Sometimes, we never feel more alive than when we get to escape reality and be spontaneous. Make sure you're always improving your well-being.

Put It Into Action

It's time for you to set your summer goals. Remember to be mindful of your overall well-being when planning these goals. Will you have enough energy to keep up with your summer plan? Are you getting enough sleep? Enough exercise? Are your goals intertwined with your social well-being? Need more help to setting S.M.A.R.T goals for yourself this summer? Let's chat! Sign-up for a free consultation so we can figure out if my compassion coaching works for you this summer.

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