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Student Blog: Fighting that Summertime Slump

Classes are over: what do I do now?!? Here are some helpful tips on keeping your mind and body active this summer!

School's out! Time for some well-deserved rest and relaxation. I am all about taking some time to just curl up in a ball and nap for eighty years; we just finished a year of theatre school in a pandemic!

I'm a musical theatre major, I love the grind. Going from 30 hours (yep) of classes a week to having my calendar completely cleared was a big jump. But I can already feel myself itching to write something new on my to-do list. So instead of sitting around and waiting for fall, here are my suggestions to fight off that Summer Slump.

1. Stay in Shape!

I am the last person to advocate any sort of shaming or toxic mindsets when it comes to performers' bodies. No ma'am. That is NOT what this is about. As a proud advanced dancer who happens to be midsized, I know for a fact that all bodies have a space in this industry. That being said, it takes so much endurance and stamina to perform eight shows a week. Take some dance classes to fill your time! Studios are beginning to open up their in-person classes again, but there are still so many online classes you can take right in your living room. Even just setting some time aside to do some ballet in the kitchen (see pictured) can warm up your body for the rest of the day. As a dancer, I've been finding so much joy in taking Barre workout classes recently. It's been an awesome booty-kicking workout that beats the gym any day. I highly recommend!

Student Blog: Fighting that Summertime Slump Other great resources for some physical activity can be found right in your neighborhood. I've fallen in love with free yoga-in-the-park classes back in Pittsburgh where I'm from and in Hartford, CT! Finding these local resources is just a quick internet search away! Nothing beats stretching in the great outdoors - good for the mind, body, and soul.

2. Create. Create. Create.

Summer is the perfect time to use the tools you've been collecting in school to work on your craft. Maybe you booked a summer stock gig! Awesome! Use that fabulous skillset of yours to apply it directly to your project. If you have a little more flexibility with your time, THIS is the summer to start creating your own content! Finally write that play or screenplay you've been thinking about for years. Go and film yourself singing your favorite song or performing your favorite monologue. Write music! Stream video games! Start a podcast!

I have fallen down the TikTok rabbit hole this past semester. I started out just making silly random videos, but after finding my niche and creating a community of nostalgic 90's kids I have accumulated over 20 thousand followers and almost 800 thousand total likes. Just from doing eerily accurate impressions of Amanda Bynes! This platform has allowed me to hone my comedic skills, get my name out there, and write and produce original content to an engaged audience.

Find a passion project. Do what you love to do.

3. Summer Cleaning

Now, this is something I cannot wait to start this summer. Having time off means that you can finally declutter your mind, your space, and your PHONE. I don't know about you guys, but when I am crunched for time during the school year, my phone gets plundered by hundreds of screenshots and voice recordings and emails and texts that I am never going to go through again. Sitting down and giving my phone or laptop a complete makeover is soothing for the soul. I even have a Pinterest Board full of wallpapers that will spice up my phone and make it look fresh and new!

I love to take the time to sit down with my rep book and get rid of all of the songs that don't bring me joy anymore. Go through your closet or bedroom and make space for all of the new things you're going to create by getting rid of the old ones. Especially as a college student, I like to live small. I only have one year in this apartment before I make the big move after graduation, CONSOLIDATE WHILE YOU CAN! And be sure to give things to your friends secondhand or donate them to places in need.

Digital and physical cleaning will allow you to reassess your goals, your mindset, and your progress. Use this time while you have it to help yourself in the long run.

4. Rest

As I said before, taking this time to rest is essential. Find ways to invest in your health through self-care. Whether it's taking a bath or going on a hike, be sure to find your methods of escape. Theatre people cannot eat sleep and breathe this stuff 24/7. Turn off the cast albums for a while and focus on what makes you, you. Spend time with friends and family, and take (at least) a whole day off where theatre isn't even on your radar. You're young, enjoy life while it's right in front of you. I love theatre with all my heart, and there isn't another career I'd want to dive headfirst into. And yet, I am so grateful for the times where I can step away from it all because whenever I go back to it, I appreciate it more.

However you're going to be spending your Hot Girl Summer, make sure that you're making the most of it.

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From This Author Student Blogger: Erika Spondike