Well — TODAY is the first day of Winter — December 21, 2021.
For many of us, it has felt like Winter for a couple of months. Unfortunately, not everyone experiences a winter wonderland during the chilly months of the year. For many, winter is the most challenging time to stay motivated and productive. Regardless, work carries on as usual, and workers need to keep on top of their game no matter the season.
Staying motivated throughout the winter will take a little extra effort on your part. Luckily, winter only lasts so long. With the following tips, you should be able to maintain your productivity until spring without an issue:
Make Light a Priority
One of the biggest triggers of seasonal depression is the lack of sunshine. The presence of light subconsciously lifts up your spirits and boosts your motivation. Unfortunately, with fewer hours of sunlight in the winter, it’s more difficult for many people to remain positive and productive throughout the entire season.
Take advantage of those few hours of sunlight that are available. Pull back the drapes, face the window, and brave the cold for the occasional walk. Even a little bit of natural sunlight will make a massive difference in your winter motivation.
If getting natural sunlight proves to be difficult, try some artificial light. For example, you can purchase a small desk lamp that works as an artificial sun. It might not seem like much, but the additional light will help you start each day off on the right foot.
Manage Your Temperature
In addition to the amount of light you get during the winter, regulating your temperature is part of your environment you need to stay on top of. If your body is shivering in the cold, you’ll have a hard time focusing on your daily to-do list. In addition, being cold has been proven to stunt productivity.
On the opposite end, being too warm can make you feel sluggish and work just as slowly as if you were battling the cold. So make sure that by keeping warm, you’re not so cozy that productivity is too far out of reach. Otherwise, you’re just replacing one extreme with the other.
Managing your temperature goes beyond adjusting the thermostat. For example, you might love cuddling up at your desk with a warm blanket, but is that making you feel productive or snoozy? You might need to opt for a nice sweater and some cozy socks to stay warm without falling into a trance.
Create Plans and Goals for Summer
If winter keeps bringing you down, create some plans and set some goals for the following summer. This will give you many exciting things to look forward to, which should boost your morale, even if only temporarily. Your summer plans will also make for a nice reward for making it through the winter to the best of your abilities.
Let’s use the classic example of summer vacation. To make this vacation happen, you need to save up money and build up your vacation hours to get the time off. This should give your work ethic a significant boost through the winter months as you dream of sunny beaches and piña coladas.
Schedule Time for What You Love
What are some activities that you just love to do? Use your Calendar to ensure you’re making time for them. Participating in your favorite activities is sure to reinvigorate you even after a long and cold week.
If you’re fighting the winter blues, it’s also unfortunately easy to lose motivation, even when it comes to your favorite hobbies and passions. Scheduling time for these activities will add to your to-do list and help you stop making excuses and procrastinating.
For example, you might love painting but have put away your easel in favor of wrapping yourself in multiple blankets while binge-watching TV throughout the afternoon. Add some time slots for painting in your Calendar to break out of your cocoon and do some painting. Even if it’s only for a few minutes a day, you’ll get the variation and enjoyment from doing something that actually interests you.
Remember to Exercise
Another activity you might lose motivation for during the winter is regular exercise. Not only is exercise good for perking you up, but it’s also a great way to stay warm. Exercise improves blood circulation and gets your heart pumping, allowing your body to regulate its temperature more effectively. Not to mention, a good sweat is bound to warm you up on even the coldest of days.
You don’t necessarily have to brave the cold to get your exercise in. Going to a local gym provides access to all kinds of indoor workouts, including stationery bikes, indoor tracks, and sometimes even a heated pool. You’ll build up healthy habits and warm up your body while only needing to walk to and from the parking lot.
If you don’t have access to a nice, friendly gym or simply don’t have the time, try some at-home workouts. You can accomplish a lot by following video guides using simple exercise methods. You don’t even need any equipment to get a good workout in; just follow the steps provided by your instructor and feel the burn.
Not all of us can say, “the cold never bothered me anyway.” However, that doesn’t mean that winter has to deprive you of all energy and enjoyment until you thaw out in the spring. Start making an effort to tackle winter head-on, and you won’t be bothered by the freezing temperatures even one bit.
Image Credit: Yaroslav Shuraev; Pexels; Thank you!