Question: Does every day of summer have to be “lazy”? I love a good beach read — and, of course, just relaxing by the pool — but over the years I’ve found that summer can also be an ideal time to knock off some big projects that get lost in the busyness of more “productive” seasons.
If you’re lucky enough to work at one of the 40 percent of companies that now offer “Summer Fridays,” you might even have some extra time to spend on a passion project or self-improvement — or even to take stock of any goals or themes you set for the year. (Crazy to think we’re already about halfway through 2017!) Here are some ideas for making this summer your best yet.
Give a “Year’s Halfway Done” Evaluation
“The middle of the year is fast approaching. Our desks are cluttered, our breakfast is a piece of toast eaten on the run and chasing after the bus is our only form of exercise. That’s why it’s the perfect time to revisit – and perhaps rethink – those resolutions. Checking in with your goals now is less about holding yourself to account for those things on your to-do list that have so far gone unticked and more about checking in with where you’re at. Is there something that you now know is a little unachievable? Move the goalposts.” — Read more at Collective Hub.
Sun’s Out, Fit Fun’s In
“Forget about fitness-focused New Year’s resolutions. Experts say summer might actually be the best time of year to conquer a new workout routine. After all, summer days offer warmer weather, more daylight and a greater chance that you can book time with a workout buddy. …Take advantage of this increase in daylight with outdoor activities, such as hiking, biking or even running on the nearest beach or lakefront, said Tara Romeo, assistant sports performance director at the Professional Athletic Performance Center in New York.” — Read more at CNN.
Pursue Professional Development
“When things get busy, time for strategic thinking is almost always the first to go. ‘Planning sessions’ seem amorphous, and the ROI is uncertain. But going for months or years without regular introspection can lead you down a professional path that you didn’t intend to be on…. Just as you’re more likely to go to the gym if you have plans to meet a workout buddy, you can use the same technique to enforce discipline around strategic thinking. Identify several trusted colleagues and start a mastermind group to meet regularly, discuss big picture goals, and hold each other accountable for meeting them. Having others whom you trust challenge your thinking can open up new ideas and possibilities you hadn’t previously considered.” — Read more at Harvard Business Review.
Make the Most of Summer Lunch Breaks
“Eat outside instead of at your desk, bring your lunch so that you can use your break to get a quick mani-pedi, or spend those 30 minutes reading a book at the park near your office. Feeling more ambitious (and have a bit more time)? Work out! From walking around the neighborhood to taking a short class to jumping in the local gym’s pool, it’s possible to be active in the middle of the day without getting behind.” — Read more at The Muse.
Your Vacation — Unplugged
“Whether you need to check on the kids or get back to a few clients, we can’t always escape the real world entirely. “Some of us have no choice but to monitor what’s happening at work or back home,” says [Melanie] Greenberg, PhD, a clinical psychologist in California and author of the upcoming book The Stress-Proof Brain. ‘Try to keep this to a minimum and check email only once or twice a day.’ Other guidelines you can set for yourself: checking and answering email for only 30 minutes a day before logging off. Or, limiting Instagram scrolling to five minutes each day but maybe avoiding other apps.” — Read more at Daily Burn.
So, let’s hear it: What do you hope to accomplish this summer (even if it’s just an aggressively mindless reading list)? Share with all of us in the comments below.
Lindsey Pollak is the leading expert on millennials and the multigenerational workplace, trusted by global companies, universities and the world’s top media outlets. A New York Times bestselling author and keynote speaker, Lindsey began her career as a dorm RA in college and has been mentoring millennials — and explaining them to other generations — ever since. Her presentations have audiences so engaged that, in the words of one attendee, “I didn’t check my phone once!” Contact Lindsey to discuss a speaking engagement for your organization.