Winter break usually means three things to me: sleeping in, no schedules, and lots of hot chocolate. After a long semester, who would want to do anything other than relax? Being in college has made me realize just how much you can get done in only a few days though, so this winter break, I’m brining productivity into the mix. Whether your break is 2 weeks or over a month long, I’m challenging you to go in with one goal in mind to accomplish! To give you a head start, here are four things you could try that will absolutely benefit you in the future, and be fun while you’re doing them!
1. Learn A Technical Skill
So I’m a little biased here, but I promise you, tech is FUN if you find the right skills to try out. There are so many paths you can take with this one, and all of them will benefit you in some way. Here are two paths you could start with:
- Learn a programming language – code is the language of the future, and even if your major/career has nothing to do with programming, just knowing the basics will help you better understand the underlying framework of the technology you use everyday. Programming isn’t just about writing code either; you’ll become a better thinker and problem-solver too! I’d suggest starting with C, but other’s might suggest Java instead. There are tons of opinions all over the internet, so just do some research and decide what’s best for you! If you’re into interactive learning, favorite websites for learning to code are Codecademy, Treehouse, and Tuts.
- Learn how to use Adobe Illustrator – This one’s on my list for the break, and I think it could benefit any blogger. If you’ve ever wanted to create your own logo, come up with unique design elements for your blog, or have a custom post image template, Illustrator is the way to go. You can eventually use this skill to create graphics for other bloggers or local businesses ($$$)!
2. Start A Business
A little adventurous, but totally achievable. Have you ever had someone ask you to do something for them, because you had a skill that they didn’t? There’s your business opportunity! Now I’m not saying you’re going to start a million dollar business over winter break (although if that’s your goal, you do you), but if you have a skill you want to put to use, this is your opportunity. My suggestions?
- Start locally – ask your friends, family, and local businesses if they would find your skill useful. You don’t even need to have your business completely organized yet, just find some clients and confirm that your skill is needed!
- Get organized – once you know there are people out there to hire you, start getting your business organized by deciding on prices, setting timelines for your service, and creating a sheet to track your payments.
- Stay professional – if your only clients are your family, that’s totally okay! Just make sure that you don’t sacrifice your time too much by giving out a million “family discounts”. It might be tough to get out of that trap, but by keeping things professional from the beginning, hopefully your friends and family will understand that you need to make money somehow!
3. Take An Online Class
The world of online courses is fascinating. You can learn just about anything online, usually for a fraction of the cost of college tuition. If there’s a skill or subject you’ve ever wanted to learn about, now’s your time to try it out! A few possibilities could be photography, blog design, a language, psychology, or history. Here are some great websites with tons of course offerings:
4. Create A Blog
I’ve said this a million times, but starting a blog was one of the best decisions I’ve ever made. It’s brought me so many opportunities, from meeting fantastic people to working with huge brands, and it’s given me something to talk about at every interview I’ve had. The worst thing that could come out of starting a blog is that you learn you hate blogging, and if that’s the case, you never have to touch it again! But seriously, if you’ve ever considered starting a blog, don’t wait any longer. I have a ton of resources throughout my blog to help you get going, including how to start a blog in the first place. From there, you can check out my blogging archives and choose what you want to learn!
Do you have any big plans for this winter break? Let me know in the comments!