Beat the Boredom: 4 Ways to Stay Productive This Summer

Summer is full of possibilities for fun and adventure. However, it doesn’t always live up to expectations. If none of your friends are around and you don’t have homework or other tasks to keep you busy, boredom might rear its ugly head. How can you slay the beast of boredom and stay productive this summer?

Learn New Things

School may be out, but that doesn’t have to put a pause on your learning. In fact, it actually frees you up to learn about the things that have always piqued your interest and for which you never had time because of school. To keep your mind sharp, explore new ideas, and even pick up some marketable skills, try some of the following:

  • Take a free online course through a platform like codecademy, Coursera, edX, or Open Culture.
  • Get a head start on next quarter’s classes by getting your textbooks early. Even if you don’t have a syllabus for your upcoming classes, you can still get ahead by browsing the table of contents, glossary, and index.
  • Listen to enriching Podcasts. These could help you learn a new language, better understand everyday science, or train your brain for more-efficient learning.

Find a Project

Everyone has things they’ve been dying to do but simply haven’t found time for. Summer presents the perfect opportunity. Maybe you want to write a novel or memoir about your semester overseas. Maybe your parents need help repainting the house. Brainstorm ideas for projects that could fill both your summer break and your soul with a sense of accomplishment.

You may also want to volunteer. Find local opportunities to tutor younger students, help animals in need, and provide services for those who don’t have enough. You’ll learn about your community and how good it feels to give back and you’ll have something special to add to your resume.


Reading is not only fun, it also has significant benefits that can help you when you go back to school. Reading can:

  • Reduce stress
  • Improve critical thinking skills
  • Increase knowledge
  • Expand vocabulary
  • Sharpen memory
  • Boost writing skills

Whether you read the hottest title on the bestseller, a classic novel or a cookbook, it’s hard to go wrong when you’re relaxing under the summer sun with some lemonade and a good book. All reading is good reading.

Establish Healthy Habits

Maybe the hectic routine of college life got you into some bad habits, like eating nothing but microwaved meals. Use your summer to re-establish healthy habits you let slide during the school year:

  • Explore the outdoors by going hiking, biking, or just taking long walks. Find some beautiful natural scenery, and take some Instagram photos to make your friends jealous.
  • Get into a healthy eating routine. Summer is prime time for farmers’ markets and produce stands so why not add those veggies back to your diet and snack on in-season fruit instead of processed foods? And why not walk or cycle to the market instead of driving?
  • Encourage your friends and family to hop on the health bandwagon. Working out with a buddy will make it much more likely for you to stick to your plan.
  • Brainstorm ways you can keep up good habits even when you’re juggling classes, homework, and social events at school.

Forget the lazy days of summer — make your break productive. Learn new things, complete a project, or get in shape. When you head back to school, you’ll free refreshed and ready to take on the challenges of the new year.

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