7 Ways to Make Lazy Summer Days Work to Your Advantage

It's hot.  It's summer.  The living is easy and all that.  Who wants to work?  Who wants to think? Who wants to write?  Isn't it ever so much better to take a vacation, to relax, lie on the beach, doze, tan…languish.

But there are things to be done, words to be written!
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Ah, to hell with it.

If you don't want to work, don't.  

Really, just don't.  And so, in the spirit of taking a break from it all, here are some ways you can not work and still feel productive.

1.  Use the power of your subconscious (sometimes called noodling).  Read a paragraph or a page or a chapter of your project, command your subconscious to ponder it, and go do something else, like meet friends for Happy Hour.

2.  Read a book.  Or books.  Summertime is made for reading.  Read trashy guilty pleasures, read  literature, read poetry, read memoirs.  Just read.  Writers can teach themselves a lot through reading, and if you don't read why do you want to write?  Just sayin'.

3.  Meditate.  Or do what I do, and start to meditate and then doze off.   Its refreshing either way.

4.  Nap.  See above.

5. Drive.  God, I love a road trip.  Nothing like long roads and crossing vast expanses of space to liberate the mind.

6. Change your venue.  If you must work, go someplace else.  Take your laptop out in the yard, or to an air-conditioned coffeeshop.  Change your location and allow new impressions in.

7. Forget about it.  For real.  Put the computer to sleep and head out for a refreshing day off, whether you go to the beach, the mountains, or enjoy an urban adventure (museums! fountains! shopping! movies!)

What do you think?  What are your favorite ways of playing hooky?  How do you convince yourself that you are really working?

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12 Comments on "7 Ways to Make Lazy Summer Days Work to Your Advantage"

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J.D. Frost
Guest
07/30/2010 04:52

The switch is flipped. The clock is ticking. If I pause for a gin martini in the hotel lounge, will there still be time?

Charlotte Dixon
Guest
07/30/2010 08:44

J.D., Yes. There is always time for a gin martini. Always. It is a rule of life. At least in my universe.

Jessica
Guest
07/30/2010 17:51

Actually the weather and pollution has been so bad this past week that staying inside and writing seems by far the more appealing of the two options.

But I shall apply your suggestions in autumn/fall – my favourite season. 😉

Charlotte Dixon
Guest
07/31/2010 07:48

Ouch, Jessica, sorry to hear that and I’ll hope that fall hurries up and arrives for you!

Jessica
Guest
07/31/2010 17:24

Unfortunately it’s one of those cases of be careful what you wish for. Fall is extremely short here. There’s about a two week transition and then we hit winter. Brrr.

But the good news is it rained yesterday, which has cleared things up to a certain extent and today is supposed to be much cooler. 🙂 Looking forward to a walk in the park.

Charlotte Dixon
Guest
08/02/2010 08:17

Jessica, Fall is my very favorite season. Will the winter be harsh there? I hope you enjoyed your walk in the park.

Jessica
Guest
08/02/2010 16:29

Yup. Winter here is very dry and very cold…and I’m an Australian who has only seen snow twice in her life.

It’s gonna be an interesting winter…

Charlotte Dixon
Guest
08/02/2010 18:02

Oh but snow is so fun! Of course, I can say that because we don’t get it often, so when we do, the whole city shuts down and everyone just enjoys it. I’ve never lived in a truly harsh climate myself.

David Paine
Guest
08/02/2010 19:28
CD: This stuff works – for both business and personal writing. I’ve used all seven techniques at one time or another. Especially the happy hour concept in #1. And #4, of course. When all else fails, take a nap. Duh! J.D. Frost: Bless you, friend, for drinking martinis elegantly and correctly. Made w/ gin – and in a hotel lounge! But, really, since there’s no such thing as a vodka martini, you don’t need to specify the spirit. A martini is made w/ gin and vermouth. Period. And back to CD: Gin, vermouth, olives, shaker and ice – at the… Read more »
Charlotte Dixon
Guest
08/03/2010 20:20

You are the expert on all things cocktail, David–J.D., you have been singled out for high praise. David, I can’t wait to sit on the deckette and sip your latest creation!

rebecca
Guest
08/05/2010 00:39

Thanks Charlotte, for another great post. I was just thinking of tomorrow, working from the library where there just might be more motivation for me.

Charlotte Dixon
Guest
08/05/2010 06:47

Rebecca, Brilliant idea, working from the library! Best motivation ever!

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