For most of us in the northern hemisphere, this month heralds a return to cooler weather. With kids also back in school (and shops full of tempting stationery!), I’ve even seen people describe this as a mini new year. Here are my suggestions for some easy September Productivity tasks to welcome your new season:
1. Revive a healthy habit
Did one of your healthy habits slip a little during the summer? If you took a trip or vacation, eating well may not have been easy… or appealing. Some people find the weather can be “too hot to exercise”. Or perhaps you indulged in a few too many sweet, frosty drinks as you kicked back with a good book. September is a great month to press “reset” on a healthy habit. I’ll be tracking my food intake in a renewed effort to kiss goodbye to some unwanted pounds, which I carried the entire distance of my running adventure in Reykjavik.
2. Jettison a summer relic
Challenge yourself to find one or more summer items which are past their best. Ditch them now, instead of hanging onto them for next spring. Ill-fitting swimsuits, worn out flip-flops, tired t-shirts and dog-eared paperbacks are all good candidates for a purge. For the Wiles family, unwanted running gear and some conference freebies are now in our donation drawer.
3. Set a 12-week goal
I don’t mean to be gloomy, but many of us only have about 12 useful weeks before the December silly season takes grip! So, this is a perfect time to set a goal to accomplish – or make great progress on – in the next 3 months. Allocate time: maybe 15 minutes a day, or two one-hour chunks per week, and mark this project time in your calendar now. I’ll be publishing this book and giving my website a makeover!
4. Negotiate a Christmas/holiday tradition
Think back to the festive season last year and take note of any family “tradition” you wish you could change. Whether it’s a new setting for a special meal, skipping a tedious journey, or an agreement that only the kids receive gifts, recall what caused you particular stress last year. If necessary, speak up now to make your holly-days a little less prickly.
5. Purchase a new planner
If you’ve yet to switch entirely to electronic organization and you love to use a paper “planner”, this is a great time to start looking for a new one. Not only do many planners now run from August – December (17 months) but even if you buy one that starts in January, you’ll get the best selection by beginning your hunt early. I’ve tried to shop for planners online but find nothing beats seeing them in person at a local bookstore or stationery specialist. Last year I treated myself to a custom model by Agendio (reviewed here) but this year I’m feeling drawn to undated planners. I bought this one and this one from Mochi Things things to try.
What else do you like to do to refresh your sense of productivity in cooler weather?
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