Back to the Grind

It’s September, and for most of us, that represents a return to normalcy (and our normal workloads). Kids are back in school. We’re back from our summer vacations. “Summer Fridays” (if you were lucky enough to have them) are over. The days are getting longer, and the work may be starting to pile up. Maybe you’re starting to feel a little overwhelmed as the carefree nature of summer starts to wear off.

Today I’d like to talk about how, as we return to the grind, we can approach this season a little differently than perhaps we have in the past. Gretchen Rubin likes to call September “the other January”. And what she means by this is that September is often a time for new beginnings and a clean slate.

Instead of feeling overwhelmed by this transition and longing for the carefree days of summer, see, instead, if you can use this time to reset.

Here are some things to think about as September rolls around to set yourself up for success:

At Home:

  • Reinstate old routines or create new ones. Renegotiate bedtimes with your kids. Establish a morning routine for yourself.

  • Give your kids new chores. (They’re a grade older, they can do more!)

  • Take a look at what’s on your list and identify a few items you want to stop doing, outsource, or delegate.

  • Plan a few fun family outings for the fall so that you have some things to look forward to.

  • Spend a few hours decluttering your house (while listening to podcasts or an audiobook).

  • Check in with your kids about what after school activities they are interested in this year, and how many. Don’t assume that it’ll be the same as last year.

At Work:

  • Purge your email; get it to inbox 0. For instructions on how, click here.

  • Clean off your desktops (physical and digital)

  • Shred that stack of papers on your desk that you haven’t looked at in months.

  • Take a good long look at your task list and prioritize your projects; make sure you have a plan of what you will accomplish before the end of the year. What can you delegate? What can you take off your list because it will likely never be a priority?

  • Take stock of your annual goals. How are you doing? What’s left to do? Make a plan to make it happen.

Do you do anything special in September?

What are your burning (productivity and time management) questions?

The 2 Minute Rule