Making the most of the summer holidays
Summer holidays are the best, especially during school. It was 6-7 weeks of no responsibilities, just chilling out and having fun with your friends and family, usually is below average weather. As you get older, however, more and more the summer becomes more than just a time to recharge your batteries and chill out, it becomes an opportunity to do things you’ve never done before or to do something that will positively impact your life soon.
Travelling Although obvious, the summer is the perfect time to go travelling. Whether this is a trip to a destination you have always wanted to go to, visiting family abroad or simply having a short break away from a hectic home life, going away can be such a rewarding experience. During my summer holidays, I always like to go travelling with friends to international and domestic locations, to have a break and make some incredible memories. However, you can also use travelling to really test your independence. Travelling alone, or with friends who have never travelled alone, can be very rewarding in learning how to navigate and organise yourself in a foreign place. Going into university, this can be very helpful in learning how you work best when left to your own devices, away from the safety blanket of your parents making all the decisions and cooking your meals for you.
Working Having a part time job during the summer is something a lot of young people do, as money is often tight but also to gain experience in a working environment. Whether its working at the place you’ve been at since you were 14 or finding a new job in a sector you’d potentially like to gain experience for the future, any kind of employment can help you get money to fund any other plans over the summer and gives you great experience to talk about on your CV and to potential employers. However, I would advise those who are coming to university in September/October to not work solidly all the summer. Yes, it is lovely to have some money in the bank, but the hard work starts when you get to Uni and being refreshed and on top form is far better than working yourself into the ground with a full-time job over the summer.
Volunteering Similar to a part time job, volunteering can be a really rewarding way to spend your time and get some brilliant experience to talk to employers about. If you are the kind of person who has to be active and gets bored easily during the weeks off, this can be a great way to spend those boring Tuesdays on a raining August day giving back to your local community and helping those in need, whilst also developing employable skills. This can be particularly useful if you get a role doing something you would love to do in the future, but any kind of volunteering will be looked at positively on your CV.
Picking up a new hobby The summers at university and between Year 13 and starting Uni can be particularly long. This gives you a large chunk of time to potentially develop yourself, and gain experience in something you have always wanted to do but not had the time to do. My way of doing this was learning Polish during the summer of Year 12, however I lost it when Year 13 started, and things became hectic quickly. My plan this summer is to pick up where I left off and hopefully gain some valuable language skills whilst also enjoying my summer. However, it doesn’t have to be languages or something towards a career. Picking up a new sport, starting to go to the gym, starting your own blog or writing short stories: finding something you are passionate about and love doing could be a great way to develop yourself during the summer.
But most importantly – ENJOY YOURSELF. As depressing as it sounds, we won’t be young forever. They’ll be a time in the not so distant future where we look back on the days we are living in now and smile and wish we were back here. Living in the moment and doing whatever it is you want to do to enjoy yourself and create incredible memories is so important. Whatever it is that makes you smile, makes you YOU, take this summer to embrace life and your own interests. Be positive, and have an amazing summer, I know I will.