the magic of summertime productivity
Happy July 1! Ah, I so heart the summer. For one, summer is essentially a synonym for fun. Two, it’s my birthday month, and I LOVE birthday month.
Last summer, probably around this time, I was with Gena at my dad and stepmom’s house in Sag Harbor (cute town in the Hamptons) and I made an epic declaration – at least that’s how it felt at the time. I proudly and loudly announced that I would take one month off next summer (that being now, this summer) and spend it in the Hamptons or down the Jersey shore. It seemed so magical and summery and kid-like for me to give myself a summer vacation at age (almost) 32.
So that was the plan. A month ago, Gena and I had gone as far as finding two places in California to stay for part of July and starting securing dates and everything. Around that time, though, we also decided that we would finally start a business together (something we had been talking about for a while now) in January 2015. Which made me realize that I had 6 months left in the land of organizing, productivity and business coaching. Truth be told, I’m sure G and my business will include those things to a degree, but it won’t at the core of it.
Which made me realize two very important things:
- I didn’t want to “take off” July at all – I actually really wanted to create two awesome programs and support those peeps who really needed my help for my last round of coaching in the land of Embarkability.
- I could be productive and enjoy the summertime all at once! I didn’t need to fly to California or close my computer for 30 days straight to feel energized and ease-filled. And what a relief it was to come to that realization.
So with all of this in mind, here are 4 ways to make sure that your summer feels both magical AND productive.
1. Do something for yourself first thing every morning. On airplanes, they always say to put the oxygen mask on you first and then on a child. And we all know conceptually that if we don’t take care of ourselves, we ultimately won’t be very good at taking care of others. So let’s put that into practice. Every morning, do something for you before you do anything else. Whether it’s meditating, reading, taking a walk, journaling, or making yourself a decadent breakfast. Whatever it is, make sure that it’s to support you AND that it’s the first thing you do in the morning. Why the first thing? Because if not, the day always seems to slip away and you putting you first somehow or another just goes back to being a nice sounding concept.
2. Set boundaries and stick to them. When would you like your workday to begin? When would you like it to end? Do you want to work on Fridays? Get clear on what your ideal day and week look like, and you may want it to look a bit different now that it’s summertime. Maybe you want to spend more time outside during the day, and you’ll do more work later into the early evening. Wherever you want to put boundaries is perfect, as long as it supports what you really want and that it truly feels realistic and doable.
3. Crystalize your vision and then create a simple and ease-filled plan. First, get super clear on your 2 major goals for the month of July (one personal and one professional). That’s it. You can have more than 2 in theory, but if you are going to REALLY commit to seeing these goals through to reality, then I strongly encourage you to limit yourself to two. For example, let’s say your professional goal is that you want to begin working with 4 new clients this month. Now, write every single thing you can think of that could help you connect with these 4 clients. After you’re done with your list, choose the top 3-5 actions that you’re going to take to see your goal through to reality. No more guesswork, and no more wondering what to do when you’re at your desk.
4. Decide what’s magical for you. It’s only fun to actually honor your boundaries around your work if you have fun and magical things to do after you’re done. So write a list of all of the things you would love to do this summer. And then every night, when your computer closes (based on whenever you decide that it should close), pick one of the things on your list. It’ll feel fun, spontaneous, and delightfully magical.
One more thing — I’m so excited and honored to support those people who truly need my help and feel called to work with me for the rest of 2014. If you’re dreaming of ease-filled days that still feel productive, a life that feels magical and freeing, all while working less and playing more, I would love to speak with you to see if working together could be a good fit. If you’re feeling called to connect, if you’re sensing that inner nudge, let’s schedule a time to speak. Here’s link to my online calendar: Let’s chat!
Here’s to making your summer (and beyond!) both magical and productive!
Love and spreadsheets,