Last year, I wrote a post on how to keep going when you’ve had a setback and just don’t have the motivation to work any more. In this post, I’m focusing on how to keep the motivation going when the weather’s lovely and you simply don’t want to be indoors, chained to your desk.
1. Vary your timetable
If you want to be out and about, enjoying the sunshine, then set the alarm early (if you’re a lark) or work in the evening (if you’re an owl). That way, you can take time out in the middle of the day and still get a full day’s work done.
2. Work outside
I wrote this post yesterday sitting on my balcony. If you don’t have a garden or balcony, then why not pick up your laptop and go to an outdoor café or local park?
3. Switch your week around
If the forecast for the weekend is rain, you could work all day on either Saturday or Sunday and make today the day you go out and enjoy the weather. (Well, maybe tomorrow – it’s raining where I am today.)
I recently went to the New Forest Show on a sunny Wednesday and spent the following Sunday at my desk. Actually, I find weekends a very productive time to work because there are no emails/calls from clients. You can just focus on the job in hand.
4. Plan regular outdoor breaks
If you’re on a 9-5 contract, working from a client’s premises, it’s probably not possible to do points 1 to 3. Instead, you could cycle or walk part of your journey into work. Then, make a point of going out every lunchtime for an al fresco sandwich.
I once did a project for a firm in the City over the summer and ate my lunch every fine day on a bench in Finsbury Circus – the nearest thing to a park in Moorgate.
And make the most of the summer evenings. So, rather than go to the cinema or the gym, do outdoor things after work – even if it’s just eating your supper in the garden.
5. Go on holiday
Freelancers need to go on holiday just as much as employed people. We tend to feel that we should put our holiday money into our buffer fund for when times get tight. But we need to relax and recharge, otherwise we get stale and lose our creativity.
I only had one long weekend off last year – but it was a mistake. This summer, I’ve had a long weekend and a week off and have another week’s holiday to look forward to in September.
So, take a break and enjoy the great outdoors. Even if you take a staycation, you can still go on interesting day trips, with all work distractions firmly turned off.
The winter will soon be upon us, so we need to make the most of the good weather while it’s still here.