beat the winter blues

Beat the Winter Blues: 4 Ways to Stay Motivated at Work in the Winter

With winter’s cold weather, shorter days and less sunlight, you and your employees may feel more lethargic and irritable than usual. This mood shift known as “winter blues” may affect your team’s productivity. According to research done by the project management software company Redbooth, winter is the least productive season in the workplace. 

Here’s how you and your team can rise above the winter blues, stay motivated and keep your productivity up throughout the winter:

  1. Make sure to get enough sunlight.

One of the biggest factors that contributes to why people feel down during winter is the lack of sunshine. Less sunlight affects your body’s biological clock that controls certain brain wave activity and hormone production. When you wake up on a dark winter morning, you are likely to want to stay in bed.

This is why, during winter, make sure to make the most of the few hours of sunlight you have. Let the sunlight in and warm up the workspace by opening the blinds or take a walk outside when the sun is shining. A little bit of natural sunlight can make a huge difference. It can subconsciously lift your spirits and give you an extra boost of motivation. Sunlight helps your brain produce the hormones your body needs to function.

You can also try some artificial lights such as sun lamps if it’s difficult to get natural sunlight where you are. 

  1. Take care of yourself outside of work and encourage your employees to do the same.

Taking care of yourself helps your body and mind fight off the winter blues. 

Eat a healthy diet. 

Try to stick to a sleep schedule. Going to bed and waking up at the same time daily will create a routine for your body that regulates your sleep cycle. 

Don’t skip exercise. Exercise can keep you warm and help boost your mood. It increases blood circulation and gets your heart pumping, letting the body regulate temperature more effectively. 

Aside from taking care of your body’s needs, you should also take care of your mental health. During winter, it’s easy to lose motivation even when doing your favorite activities. Nurture your spirits by finding time to do activities you love. It’s one of the best ways to boost your mood after a long and cold week. 

You can also try something new. Learning a new skill can rewire your brain. Whether it’s learning to play a new musical instrument or simply trying on a new recipe for dinner, trying something new and different can enhance your mood and help you fight off the winter blues.

  1. Reward yourself with summer plans.

Anticipating brighter and sunnier days can help you get through the coldest months of the year with a better disposition. Cheer yourself up by starting to plan your summer vacation: it gives you something to look forward to. 

A well-planned vacation can help you truly get away and get the most out of your time away from work. And if you’re feeling courageous, do as Arianna Huffington and I do with vacations: Use a filter so that all inbound emails are deleted while away and people who email you receive an auto-responder that tells them to email when you’re back if it’s important. 

  1. Beat the winter blues together as a team.

Tackle the winter blues together. Make sure everyone at your office is taken care of and is prepared for the cold winter months. Let your team know that it’s normal to feel out of sorts during the winter months, but also normalize meetings that challenge head-on as a team. 

Communicate that you’re all in this together and stay connected whether that’s in-person in an office or virtually via Zoom or Slack. Celebrate winter in fun ways and keep negativity at bay.

Whether working from home or at the office, don’t forget to check in with your people. Ask them how they are feeling and how you can support them. The winter blues are hard to overcome, but not impossible. With these four tips and a team that has your back, the winter blues will be over in no time.

In love and respect,

Hilary Corna

Hilary Corna

Bestselling Author, Keynote Speaker, Podcast Host, Founder of the Human Way ™...

Hilary’s favorite title is HUMAN.


Leave a Reply

I am starting a revolution. One business and one person at a time.



When was the last time your inbox inspired you? Sign up today!

Thank you for subscribing!