As the days get shorter and the temperatures drop, it seems like everything is trying to convince us to stay inside and hug a warm blanket. From the seasonal affective disorder (SAD) that many experience during the winter months, to the lack of vitamin D produced in our bodies as the sun fades away, it can be a challenge to keep up motivation and stay productive at work during the gloomiest season of the year.
However, being at work is an important part of our lives and, luckily, there are some tips we can use to increase our productivity and survive the gloom of winter without feeling overwhelmed.
Adapt Your Waking Schedule
When there is less sun, the natural inclination is to sleep-in longer and be lethargic during the day. If you’re really struggling to get out of bed, make sure to adjust your alarm clock 10 minutes earlier every day until you are no longer dependent on the snooze button.
Once you are up, look out the window, smile, and let the suffering come in. It is okay to lament the darkness and the weather, it is just important to make sure your lamentations aren’t influencing your mood more than they should.
Try Indirect Sun Exposure
Since lack of sun is one of the most common factors that put us in a bad mood during winter, we should make the most of the little bit of sunlight available to us, even if it feels like it is not enough.
When there is still light in the sky, try to be outside as much as you can. If it is too cold for you to be outside, try to find a spot in your office where the sun can reach you and provide you with a little bit of warmth and cheer.
Also, adding other sources of indirect sunlight to your workspace may have a positive effect on your mood. Include things such as a lamp, a sunflower or yellow walls to remind you of the sun on days where the sky is grey.
Stay Active and Energized
It is common to feel sluggish and sedentary during the winter, but you should avoid being physically inactive. It is important to keep your body active while also indulging yourself with activities that bring you joy. Exercise is a great way to keep your endorphin levels up and your mood cheerful, so find activities that you enjoy, such as running, swimming or cycling.
Also, winter can be a lousy time for eating healthy, but if you make sure to eat nutritious, healthy food, your body and mind will thank you for it. Choose foods that are high in Vitamin D, fatty acids and magnesium to ensure you get enough of the nutrients your body needs to stay energized during the winter months.
The risk for winter blues is real and, lucky for us, there are but a few steps we can take to stay energetic and productive at work during the dark months. Adapt your waking schedule, try to get some indirect sun exposure, stay active and energized and you should be good; there’s no reason to surrender to the dark of winter.
Take these tips and boost your motivation. If winter’s gloom starts getting to you, don’t forget to take a break, breathe and allow yourself a few moments to be as slow as the season requires.