That vacation on the ski slopes was exactly what you needed in February! Now there is just one problem…you have to manage the office during the summer while everyone else takes their vacations.
It’s more than fair, really. The pace of business, like the pace of life, slows down a little in the summer. That doesn’t mean you can take ALL your meetings and conference calls out on the patio of your favourite bistro. While it’s well-known that the rules of professionalism never take a break, the quieter and slower pace of summer office work can make it difficult to stay motivated to do the most effective and efficient work possible.
How do you achieve work-life balance in the summer?
Here are three tips for getting work done while the sun shines.
Get up and Get started Earlier
In winter, setting your alarm to get up in the cold dark of mid-winter mornings is the most tiring part of the year. In summer, the sun rises earlier and the brighter sunlight is more likely to help your body wake up naturally. The relatively cooler mornings are also exactly the right time to get the most accomplished. If you’re a commuter, getting an early start can get you to the office earlier in off-peak traffic.
Consider a Longer Day, but a Shorter Week
If you’re getting an earlier start, you might consider working longer days less often. The so-called “European shift” of working four 10-hour days per week is gaining popularity in cities around North America to reduce commuter traffic and ease the effects of summer smog. The benefit of a 3-day weekend every week of the summer certainly gives more opportunities for vacation-deprived office workers to travel and re-connect with family and friends. Chances are, at least one of your major clients or suppliers are already making similar plans for the season. Duplicating their longer day and shorter week schedule would maximize the efficiency of the arrangement.
Switch Up Your Exercise Routine
Summer stress and winter stress might be different strains of the same disease, but the medicine is always the same: Exercise.
If you’re working inside for the summer, don’t work out in the gym. If it is at all possible, walk or cycle to work. Relocate your daily laps to an outdoor pool or a plan a hike through a provincial park early one evening. Lakeside boardwalks, piers and beach paths are easy to forget about over the winter, but these local features re-open every summer and provide lots of opportunities for lunchtime walks to the sound of waves.
Working for the summer need not be a long slog of humidity and smog in the city. With earlier days, shorter or more flexible work weeks, and appropriate outdoor exercise, it can be a time when everything gets done quickly and quietly under the warmth of the sun.
published June 24, 2015