The summer holidays aren’t for everyone and, as they stretch on into the late summer months and finally into September, you would be forgiven for wanting to return to studying hard. It can be difficult to stay focussed during the summer, and to find ways to stave off boredom, especially if you don’t live close to your friends. However, this might be something to get excited about, when you’ve not got any distractions, you can focus on yourself, and set some goals for the coming academic year.

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Get into a routine

Firstly, just because you’re on holiday, you don’t have to spend two months without a routine. This isn’t to say that you should be waking up early and shunning relaxation,¬†but it does help to have a daily, or even weekly,¬†pattern. If you get out of bed at 11am every day to watch some daytime television without a plan, then your summer is going to feel longer than it might if you pack it with exciting things to do. Plan to go on long walks or pick up your childhood instrument once again, or start a project that you would never have the time to complete alongside schoolwork.

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Get your foot in the door

The summer holidays are a time to reflect, and you should use this time to think back on the last academic year. If you’re going into a new phase of education, or you feel as though you’re at a particularly pivotal point in your academic career, using the summer holidays to work out what you want to do next could be time well spent. If you have already secured an internship for the summer, then you’re ahead of the game. If you haven’t then you shouldn’t worry. Try contacting businesses in the line of work that you’re interested in and see if they need an extra pair of hands around the office. Taking an internship is a great way to gauge whether a career might be for you, and you’ll be able to start the Autumn term knowing that you have made some progress.

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Find out more about yourself

If an internship isn’t for you, and you’re still struggling to work out what you might want to do when you finish studying, that is perfectly valid. You don’t have to decide what you want to do with the rest of your life straight out of education. Plenty of people try out different careers for years before deciding exactly what works for them. If you’re in need of some guidance, sites such as TheCircle offer services such as online tarot readings which might help to paint a clearer picture of where you see yourself heading, and offer some solutions to challenging situations.

You could also take a Meyer’s Briggs test, which asks a series of questions to determine your strengths, and then offers career paths based on your results. It may offer you something that you had never even thought about before.

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The summer holidays don’t have to be a drag. With a bit of forward planning and a good balance of work and play, you can return for the new academic year feeling refreshed and ready to take on new challenges; and with any luck, you’ll have a bit of a tan.