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5 Ways to Benefit From a Snow Day

So, in my part of the world, it’s a snow day today.  Schools are closed, businesses are shut down and the media is advising folks to stay off the road as much as possible.  Outside the window is nothing but white for as far as the eye can see and it appears peaceful and quiet as the snow continues to fall. Pretty idyllic in a way.

At the same time, in my household, kids are home, on what would normally be a school day, making my work day a bit more chaotic than usual.

So how can this day be beneficial to those of us trying to get work done today? A snow day can be a great reminder to:

    1. Slow things down a bit – With all the responsibilities in our lives at work and at home, it can seem that every single second of the day is so programmed and accounted for that we don’t have a second to spare.  With a snow day, we are forced to slow things down as many of our commitments get cancelled. Take a cue from the stillness of what is out the window and take things down a notch today.
    2. Take time to focus on what matters – Take advantage of this by taking a minute to breathe, to cross the extraneous off your list,  and to prioritize what really matters.  For some people, this means spending time with your kids or maybe it’s your pets. Make the time count. It’s a gift to you today. For others, it’s taking the time to slow your thoughts down (as the inevitable list of need to dos come fast and furious in your head, jot them down for another time) and let your thoughts wander.  We rarely schedule time for just visioning and imagining where we want our businesses to go next.  This is a great opportunity to do that.  Another way to make use of the day is to spend time focusing exclusively on one project, one idea, one action that will move the needle on where you’re going in your business.  Hunker down in your snow fort and keep distractions at bay (you know what I’m talking about – emails, social media, cleaning the closet….).
    3. Do something nice and unexpected for someone – This morning, I looked out the window and saw a young man, no one I recognized, take a snow blower and clean off all the snow from the sidewalks on our block including the walkways to our front steps and the walkways to the road. No one asked him to do this and he wasn’t expecting to get paid for it. I know I sure appreciated it. Snow days are a great day to do something kind for someone else without expecting anything in return. It may be for a neighbor, a friend, a family member, OR even a customer of yours. It doesn’t have to be much but surprise someone by doing something for them today.
    4.  Take care of yourself – A snow day is a great time to treat yourself as well.  It could be something simple like taking the time to snuggle on the couch with an afghan and a good book or movie, or taking a minute to enjoy a cup of tea or hot chocolate.  Treating and taking care of yourself is a good way to re-energize and refocus your thoughts.
    5.  Go play in the snow! – Whether literally or figuratively, take the time to “play”.  It’s even more fun when you do it with your kids or your pets.  Taking time to play, even for a short time, will help you become more creative (research has shown that by stepping outdoors your ability to become more creative increases), loosen the cobwebs (by changing your physiology you change your mindset), connect you to others or to nature (enriching your life and theirs), and make you a happier you (and need I say, ultimately more productive you?). So give yourself permission to make snow angels, start a snowball fight, build a fort, go sledding or just go for a walk in the snow.  You can also “play” indoors by pulling out a board game or card game, building with legos, cutting out snow flakes, or just day dreaming out the window.

    Meanwhile, the snow keeps falling here.  Who knows, it could be another snow day tomorrow.  And if it isn’t, I’m going to call one for myself anyways.

    Remember, you can call a “snow day” any day you like – and you should at least a couple of times a year for yourself and your business to help you reset and focus.