We’re getting into prime vacation time. Summer’s end is rapidly approaching, and it’s getting harder and harder to put off going on vacation, taking ‘just one’ extra day off, or staring out the window daydreaming about the beach.
Did you know that productivity regularly goes way down during the summer months? It’s true. With long holidays and people taking ‘bonus’ Monday’s and Friday’s off to enjoy a long weekend, productivity in an office can decrease as much as 36% according to a survey done by the Society for Human Resource Management.
You don’t have to suffer through the “summer slump” anymore! These are some of our top tips for staying productive and working hard when all you want to do is lay out in the sun or enjoy the beautiful day!
Don’t Overtask Yourself
Don’t give yourself huge, hours-long tasks day in and day out, back to back. The grind of working on one thing for hours at a time, just to flip around and do it again on another project, can make your dream of taking a Monday off and going on a road trip.
Instead, make sure you break everything you can up into 15-30 minute segments. Chunking things up like this is going to make it easier to shift your focus and pay attention. Longer tasks will just make you yearn for freedom.
Be Strategic, if You Can
If your office allows, take your laptop with you to a coffee shop with outdoor seating or a park with wifi (Or use your phone!) and get work done in a new setting. Being outside and in the beautiful weather may just be enough for you to feel like you get to ‘enjoy’ the summer while still putting in the work.
Some offices won’t let you do this, and that’s a bummer. But if you can take advantage of this, you might see your mood and productivity skyrocket. Sometimes just being outside of the normal setting can make a big difference!
Focus on Less Important Tasks
Half the office out? Take advantage of a slower pace and less stress to work on projects or tasks that you usually put off or set on a lower priority.
Maybe this is spending a day with the office eating pizza and shredding old documents that should have been eliminated months ago or reorganizing the cubical structure for better workflow. Keep it interesting and fun, but still productive.
Plan an End-of-Summer Goal
Plan a getaway for yourself to make a goal to work towards. Whether it’s a long weekend you take to a neighboring city or a big adventure, having a deadline to get things done by and something to really look forward to will help spur you into action.
Even if you can’t take time off, make little goals – a weekend date with a good friend to the movies or bowling, or cutting out an hour early on a Friday for happy hour… as long as you have everything finished.
We are goal-oriented beings, so this can really help you stay focused and productive when you would otherwise be tempted to simply put it off!