Summer Brain

It’s that time of year again. The time when I start suffering from the dreaded summer brain. An unproductive, fuzzy, and often lazy mindset that afflicts me about this time every year.

The first few weeks of summer are not bad. My daughter attends a day camp that mirrors school hours, so our schedules don’t change much and we tick along as usual.

But at the end of July, day camp ends and summer sets in full throttle. Days where we don’t have much on the calendar. Days where we can actually sleep in. Nights where bedtime is rather loosely enforced.

That’s when summer brain sets in. Some days I don’t remember what day of the week it is. Many days devolve into spur of the moment plans. As a person who thrives on schedules and does not do spontaneity well, this can cause anxiety, which can further fog the brain and scatter my focus.

My writing definitely suffers during summer brain. When I do find time to work, I find it difficult to focus. Because I am constantly awaiting an interruption, I am often reluctant to begin working during the day at all and end up wasting chunks of time. If I flip-flop between writer hat and mommy hat too much, it can make my head spin and make me irritable.

So how do I cure summer brain? I don’t. Only time cures it. Eventually school resumes and a work schedule emerges and I am able to think clearly again. Until then, I just ride with it and do what I can and try not to beat myself up for not getting more done. My daughter won’t be little forever. So maybe missing a few work days to go swimming, or out for ice cream, or browsing through the library, or hanging out at the park isn’t really time “lost.”

It’s memories gained.

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