Why the winter blues make workers less productive

As the clocks wind back and our mornings and evenings begin to get increasingly darker, the average worker’s chances of being out in the daylight for enough time dwindles. A lack of productivity amongst workers can occur when their minds are focused on the cold weather, instead of their to-do list.

However, this isn’t going away, so it is better to embrace the changing seasons and not leave yourself feeling behind come the New Year.

Here are our top tips for increasing productivity throughout winter.

Why productivity dips throughout the winter months

There is a combination of reasons explaining why productivity decreases during winter. Although this doesn’t apply to everyone, it becomes clear as to why people struggle to feel proactive and productive when it is cold and dark.

Energy levels dip due to us becoming less active in the cold and rainy weather. The less activity you do, the lazier you end up feeling. In the hotter months, we are more likely to venture outside on our lunch break or go for a run before or after work in the sunshine.

Vitamin D levels dip because we aren’t exposed to as much sunlight. In the UK, it is said that throughout the winter months we should take extra Vitamin D supplements to make sure that we are boosting our energy levels.

Poor eating habits increase because warm and filling comfort foods are desired in the cold months. If you aren’t focusing on your health as much as you normally would, then you will find your overall happiness and energy will decrease because you have dropped out of your routine.

What can you do to compensate for winter induced fatigue?

Not only is it crucial to look after your body and make sure you are getting the vitamins that you might be lacking during winter, but you should also aim to be more productive in the workplace, rather than letting the winter blues creep in and take over.

Here are some top tips for remaining productive in the workplace during winter.

1. Set realistic targets and goals, daily

Setting daily tasks during the winter months can give you the boost you need and prove that you can be productive during winter. The mindset that you go into work with will determine how much you get done and how productive you are. Setting yourself realistic tasks to complete each day is important to provide yourself with a feeling of accomplishment.

2. Get outside as much as you can, but wrap up warm

The cold, and often rainy weather isn’t very appealing to get out into, but it is important to try and get as much outside time as possible. Wrap up warm and bring an umbrella in case it rains, even if you only pop down the road for a coffee, you’ll feel more refreshed and ready to work when you come back to the office.

3. Make sure your working space is bright

There is nothing more demotivating than a dreary workplace lacking in both natural and artificial light. Be sure to open the blinds, and if any lights are dim or not working, alert your building manager to get them fixed. Having a light and open workspace will do wonders for your productivity, as you won’t feel so tired and burnt out as a result.

4. Focus on your physical and mental health

The winter months are often some of the busiest for businesses. So, teaming a busy period with decreased energy and productivity levels is bound to cause stress on yourself and the wider team. Not only is winter a stressful period in terms of workload and the weather, but it is also a stressful period financially for some of us as we come up to Christmas time. Therefore, if you are feeling stressed or low during this period, be sure to take some time for yourself, or to let your manager or HR team know that you are struggling. That way, you can be helped, and thrive as we enter into the New Year.

If you are looking for a new opportunity ahead of the New Year, get in touch with one of our specialist recruitment consultants today who can help you to secure your dream role. Alternatively, browse our bank of career advice articles today to learn more about how to become the best you can be in the workplace.

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