As the school year ended and the summer commenced, my work-life drastically changed. Just a month ago, I had deadlines every week, goals to accomplish, and people relying on my work. Teachers were expecting me to complete assignments, and when I did, I was rewarded with a physical grade. Now that summer has started, there’s no one to keep me in check with no deadlines. So how do you remain productive when no one’s watching you?
There’s always one person in your life, whether that be a teacher, parent, or boss, that burdens you with a certain amount of stress. It can be extremely annoying, even unhealthy, but don’t you get more things accomplished with that person around? I do think there’s a certain sweet spot to this problem, however. Although I don’t think many people have acquired this skill, I think you can be the one to police yourself and remain on track. There is a sharp difference between yourself and that boss, parent, or teacher – they can give you real punishments. They can fire you, take away privileges, or give you bad grades. Those are the things that motivate you to give your best work so you can avoid the punishments. So how can you apply this kind of stress to yourself?
The key is to stay disciplined, and when you stray from your path, you become disappointed in yourself. Training yourself to be unsatisfied with your quality of work is the key, but it takes time to obtain this skill. As a high-schooler, summers are the only time to practice being independent, and with a little effort, it can be super beneficial to have this trait when I enter back into the world of deadlines and exterior stress come September.