Summer is finally here and it’s your time to relax and unwind. But don’t forget fall classes are just around the corner. If you don’t want to feel completely shocked jumping back into a daily routine when classes start up, here are seven things you can do to stay productive during summer break.

  1. Do Some Independent Reading

    man reading a book

    You’ve been taking instructions from your professors all year long. Now’s your chance to keep the gears in your head turning by immersing yourself in a book that interests you. Reading is known to relieve stress, expand your vocabulary, and help critical thinking. Keep your brain focused by exercising the skills you learned in school on your own.

  2. Get a Summer Job or Internship

    man sitting in office

    Working is probably the last thing you want to do while on break, but once you graduate there won’t be summer breaks. You can prepare yourself for the real world by finding a job to help you maintain a regular schedule. It can be as simple as working in an office mail room or finding an internship in your field. Most companies are hesitant to hire people without experience, so this is your chance to get a leg up on the competition and gain some real world skills before starting your career.

  3. Look for Your Next Apartment Rental

    looking up at apartment building

    Going into your second year, you’re most likely going to want a new campus apartment or off campus housing. Finding your own apartment in Champaign-Urbana can help you feel more responsible and proud to have your own space. Remember to look for something affordable like a one bedroom apartment or studio. Or if you’re splitting with a roommate, look for two bedroom apartments. If you need tips on apartment hunting near UIUC campus, check out our guide here.

  4. Clean Your Apartment

    cluttered apartment

    Chances are, after the chaos that is finals, your apartment looks like a sty. Take advantage of your free time by cleaning your living space. This can help you stay organized while school is out and prevent you from falling into lazy habits. Studies say that a clean home can reduce stress and increase productivity by letting you retreat to a clutter-free zone.

  5. Take a Summer Class

    students in college classroom

    There’s no better way to stay productive than by continuing your studies through summer. Staying in school all year round can help you graduate sooner and put you on the path to your career ahead of others. Summer school isn’t for everyone, but for those who like to keep moving, look into acquiring summer grants to help reduce your student loans while you can.

  6. Stay Active and Exercise

    woman jogging in sunset

    It can be tempting to sleep in until noon and catch up on shows in bed, but following this routine all summer long won’t only reduce your productivity, it’s unhealthy. You don’t necessarily have to join a gym. Take advantage of the warm weather and go for a jog.  Getting some fresh air will help you stay active and in a positive mood. If you don’t go out, you’ll regret it when you’re stuck in doors all day during the fall.

  7. Learn a New Skill

    painting supplies on table

    You’ve been given the gift of time. Use it wisely and learn to play an instrument or do some crafts. Painting can be an enlightening experience and useful to relieve stress. Learning a new language can not only be useful for future job aspirations, but help you stay connected to our growing multi-cultural world.

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