How can you make the most of the summer holidays so you have the right balance of downtime and preparation for the new year? Here are some tips for students.
Summer holidays are just around the corner. For most students, this means six to eight weeks away from school.
If you’re anything like I used to be, you will start the holidays with grand plans of making memories, getting fit, relaxing or decluttering. But often the holidays have a way of vanishing.
All of a sudden, you’re back at school feeling the same as you did the year before; lethargic, disengaged and alone. Nothing has changed and no new experiences or thought patterns have been explored.
Don’t get me wrong! You need a break and time to rest and recharge but with some forward planning, you can do that and more.
My wish is for you to jump into 2023 rejuvenated, with a clearer mindset and more hope.
Below are my top five school holiday pivots to energise and renew your soul.
1. Avoid the screen binge
It’s the holidays… I get that you want to binge on the most incredible content ever created by humans on Netflix, TikTok reels or YouTube shorts.
Honestly, I have no issue with it. My recommendation is that you just aim to reserve a binge for once a week during the holidays. Lying on your bed day after day on your laptop looking at videos, while the sun is shining and memories are waiting to be made is just not living your best life.
To put it into perspective, you either spend 79 hours watching every episode and series of Big Bang Theory. Or you can spend 40 hours getting your pilot’s license or 20 hours investing in an online course on songwriting, entrepreneurship, 3D Animation or whatever you love doing.
The choice is yours… but think about what you will look back on.
2. Create a 7-day ritual
During any seven-day period of the holidays try and create a new habit. Aim to keep the ritual for seven days, at which point you can either ditch the habit, keep it going or create another.
You can’t get results in any area unless you’re willing to repeat an action. Some people are so excited about novelty or this next new shiny thing that they never advance.
Most people are not as successful as they should be because they’re not willing to be as bored as they must be. Success demands repetition and this can often feel frustrating.
Aim to do something you have always wanted to do but don’t have the time to attempt during the school term.
Below are a few ideas:
- Go for a bush walk with a parent, sibling, or a friend
- Read a book in a day
- Try yoga or Pilates
- Perfect a single recipe
- Set a fitness goal and start working towards it
3. Work on a spiritual practice
Human beings have three parts. We are physical, mental, and spiritual. I’m not talking about religion, more so about transcendence.
Our spiritual side often gets ignored. It takes patience to develop, hence why the holidays are a perfect time to craft a new practice.
The benefit of developing a spiritual practice is that it will keep you centred. It helps us understand we are a part of something bigger than ourselves and keeps our focus outwards.
The holidays are a perfect time to slow down and restore your soul. Below are a few ideas for developing a spiritual practice.
- Write in your journal for a few minutes each night
- Practice gratitude
- Learn to meditate
4. Open your mind
“Our need to be right can be more important than our need to find out what is true. We like to believe our own opinions without stress testing them.” – Ray Dalio
Being open-minded helps you develop a positive mindset and keeps you moving forward towards growth. Nothing grows when it is constricted or obstructed so open yourself up to new ideas, thoughts and possibilities.
Our brains are constantly creating shortcuts, schemas and biases which cause us to close our minds. People who are open tend to be kind and generous.
The two best methods to become more open minded are:
- Striving to be a better and listener
- Seeking out not just the grey areas but every colour available, which means looking at things from as many angles and perspectives as possible.
5. Spend time creating
We live in an age where we have so much to consume that we stop creating. But the future belongs to people who are creators, not consumers.
Whether you realise it or not, you are creative. Your creative muscle might be weak, but it can always be strengthened and developed.
Consider that every painting from the Mona Lisa to Van Gogh’s Starry night and every animal from the clownfish to the rainbow lorikeet have all stemmed from a modest three primary colours.
Whatever level of creativity you start from, you can grow and develop it, higher and deeper.
Wellbeing is realised by small steps but it is no small thing. – Zeno
Don’t let what you do know stop you from learning what you don’t know.
Don’t say, “Nothing I do matters”. That’s untrue. The truth is everything you do matters.