Summertime is a welcome relief after a snowy winter and rainy spring. If you’re stuck in the office during this beautiful time of year, you might find yourself daydreaming more and working less. It doesn’t help that summer is usually the slowest time of the year for most businesses, so you might feel like you don’t have enough work to keep yourself busy. While you probably have your vacation planned during the summer, you still have to be at work for the rest of the season. It can be hard to stay on task when you’d rather be outside, so it’s important to find ways to keep yourself productive at work.
1. Plan Sunshine Breaks
Staying in the office during a beautiful summer day is enough to keep most people distracted. Rather than being stuck under the fluorescent lights, plan time to get outside and soak up some rays. Breaks should be taken throughout the day — if you work for eight hours straight, you’re going to be burnt out by the end of each day. A mid-morning walk can help reinvigorate you for the rest of the day. You can even set up a little picnic and take your lunch break under a tree. Just be sure to apply plenty of sun block before going out in the sun!
2. Keep Hydrated
As tempting as an iced coffee might be with the summer heat, you should switch out your caffeinated beverage for a healthier option. Drinking water is a great healthy habit to have. It’s always important to drink plenty of water, but staying hydrated in the summer can help keep you motivated. As you drink more water, toxins are released from your body and you have more energy for the day ahead of you. Because your body’s natural reaction is to sweat when it’s hot, it’s especially important for you to drink enough water during the summer months.
3. Set Up Goals
If you get distracted easily or find yourself daydreaming about the beach instead, set up a list where you outline everything you have to accomplish for the day. Highlight important tasks that have to be done, like completing a time tracking tutorial for your office’s new system or finalizing a report for your boss. Prioritize these tasks and set up a time frame for each task. It’s much easier to stay motivated if you have a game plan ahead of time.
4. Remove Distractions
We all have little things that distract us during the day — checking email and twitter are my major distractions. If you know that vacation pictures your friends posted on their Facebook pages will distract you, you can download some apps that will block the websites that kill your productivity. If you face a window and find yourself distracted by the squirrels running up and down the trees, turn your desk around so you can focus on your work.
5. Dress the Part
The outfit you wear can make a huge difference on the way you feel. If you’re dressed in a t-shirt and shorts, you’ll feel like you’re ready for a barbeque outside. While dress codes vary from office to office, business casual is always a safe bet to wear at work. You should still wear clothing suitable for summer — light materials and brighter colors are acceptable in the office — but maintain a sense of professionalism in your appearance. If your outfit makes you feel like a professional, you’ll be more inclined to focus on your work instead of your weekend plans outside.
6. Stay On Task and Keep Your Focus
Work doesn’t stop just because it’s summer. You can still have a productive day despite the beautiful weather. Keep your focus on the work you need to get done and take breaks as needed. As long as you keep that up, you can stay motivated during the slow summer months.
Image by Pierre-Olivier Bourgeois