28 Apr The Secrets to Staying Focused at Work as Summer Approaches
Sipping cocktails on the beach.
Or meetings, reports, deliverables, and sales?
What are you focused on as summer approaches?
It’s challenging to say the least to remain focused on your job or business in June and July. I know I’m thinking about my upcoming 10 year anniversary trip to Barcelona with my wife in July and my family vacation to Portland, Maine in August.
Since this is such a universal challenge, I thought to ask for some help. So I turned to the Young Entrepreneur Council (YEC), an invite-only organization comprised of the world’s most promising young entrepreneurs. I asked these leaders how they stay focused on work throughout the summer, and these are the secrets they shared:
- Maintain a Healthy Diet
Staying focused at work means staying disciplined. It takes a certain level of mental fortitude to eat healthfully throughout the work week. Exercising this level of discipline is contagious and will only optimize your general productivity, which is critical.
2. Work Towards a Larger Goal
Regardless of the season, always play a big game and keep your eyes on the prize. The game will be different for each one of us. It could be “generate X million in revenue” or “acquire X number of new customers.” It’s your game. You set the goals, the rules and the prize, and like in other games, the more you play, the better you get. Enjoy your summer.
3. Reward Your Team With Extra Time Off
When summer approaches, we incentivize our staff by giving every other Friday off to enjoy the sun and the beach, considering our digital agency is in Florida. By providing this reward during the summer, our staff is super focused on getting the job done sooner and with little to no errors at all. They work hard and long Monday-Thursday so no calls or follow up occurs on a Friday.
4. Schedule Time for Fun
I think it’s really important (not just in the summer, but all year) to schedule time to have fun. I’ve gotten into a routine where I wake up around 6:30 a.m. and work solidly until around noon. I then give myself a break in the afternoon. I’ll meet friends for lunch, golf, or hit the gym. Doing this allows me to decompress, and then I’m super energized and focused when I get back to work.
5. Be Realistic
If you have caught summer fever in the past, assume you’ll catch it again. The best thing to do is develop a few key metrics of must-have business accomplishments and plan for fun separately. This way, you can enjoy your summer guilt-free.
6. Plan Your Vacations Early
Regardless of the weather, there is nothing that motivates more than knowing you have a vacation right around the corner. Plan your summer vacation early in the year and you’ll be less likely to be distracted leading up to the vacation. Also, consider taking several mini vacations. That way you’ll always have something to look forward to and won’t feel like you are missing out.
7. Incorporate Your Work Into Your Summer Schedule
Every year I look forward the summer, because I have found great ways to integrate it into my daily work. Most people think that it can become a distraction, but nobody has thought about how many opportunities it can open up. I have done everything from working in the park to pitching on a hike to brainstorming at the beach. We millennials are passionate about our work, but also never want to miss out on life.
8. Set New Goals
Every month without fail, I set aside some time to evaluate my progress and think about how I could push myself further. I accomplish some of these goals in a few minutes, and others I simply don’t reach. That’s OK. The key is that I’m my own teacher, pushing forward progress. This is especially vital in the summertime when it’s easy to lose sight of your goals.
9. Start Your Day Outside
Instead of going to the office and thinking about how badly you want to leave, start your day outside. Walk, swim, or hit the driving range. You’ll arrive at the office less antsy and more ready to focus.
10. Invent a New Schedule
I have a winter schedule and a summer schedule, almost like hibernation season and, well, recreation season. My winter work days are more compact. I work the same number of hours in the summer, but I allow for more frequent hours off — that means more long weekends and more days with a break in the middle.
11. Take Extended Lunch Breaks
During the summer, I often like to take some extra time on my lunch break and do something out of the norm. Find a spot where you can enjoy your lunch outside to break the monotony of constantly being indoors. This can also increase your productivity, as you will return to the office with a completely refreshed mind.
12. Utilize Your Evenings
Summer brings with it warmer weather and longer days. Take advantage of the extra sunshine and bring your laptop outside to enjoy yourself during the evenings. This way you can enjoy the great weather without interfering with your most productive hours.
These are 12 leaders’ secrets to staying focused on work throughout summer. Now it’s your turn. Which of these resonate with you? What do you do to stay focused on work throughout summer? Please let me know your thoughts in the Comments section below, and please share this post with your network so we can all have the most productive (and fun) summers possible!