The dog days of summer are officially behind us. Schools are back in session and many people are coming back from their last lazy vacation days. For many, Labor Day can bring on feelings of anxiety about getting back into the grind. But believe it or not, the end of summer not only brings with it a new season, it breeds productivity.
A Harvard Business School study shows that a decrease in sunny weather is directly related to an increase in worker efficiency. So not only does Fall bring cooler temps and beautiful foliage, it brings a heightened awareness and new-found energy in your work. On cooler days, especially rainy days, workers are less distracted by the alternatives to work. Instead of thinking about being at the beach or being outside in the sun, they’re more focused on their day-to-day tasks.
In fact, according to research published in PLOS Medicine, summer heat waves may slow down brain function. So if you’re ready to kick-start your goals, now is the time to do it. There’s a good reason to celebrate the end of summer. Below are a few ways to stay focused as you shift into the new season.
1. Work in blocks of time
Trying to tackle too many tasks at once will lead to increased stress and ultimately slow you down. Try working on one project for 20 minutes and then take a 5 minute break. By doing this, you’ll have time to recharge and keep your energy up.
2. Get in the zone
Think about the moments you’ve felt most inspired and energized at work. Take note of what was happening in those moments…what was your environment like, did you exercise before/after, were you with coworkers? By understanding the moments in which you’ve been most productive, you’ll be able to recreate those much easier and tackle more projects throughout the day.
3. Take advantage of the morning
Our brain power is usually at its peak in the morning. So rather than spending time doing administrative tasks or other work that feels mindless, spend the first hour of your day tackling your biggest priorities. Also, try prioritizing your own needs first. Rather than returning messages and responding to others requests, take the time in the morning to focus on your daily needs.