The Dog Days are Over (Almost): Seasonality in the Workplace

Tips for working with the shifting energy of summer.

Lilith Amberly
Jul 28 · 3 min read
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Photo by Kristijan Arsov on Unsplash

When you think of the “dog days of summer,” do you hear Florence and the Machine streaming through your car speakers as the sun blares down on the highway before you? Does it make you want to get out and do something? Is it Florence, or is it that subtle shift that starts to happen in August?

Have you started to feel the shift? Does your energy do a little uptick in late summer before the autumnal descent?

The energy in July is typically a little stagnant.

All starting with the rising of Sirius (the dog star) at dawn. The Greeks and the Romans associated these days with intense heat, drought, bad luck, and general lethargy. I’m with them on the lethargy part, I’ve been doing what I must and nothing more, just simmering steadily with the sun’s heat.

Now I’m watching those lazy, hazy days stretching out behind me in the rear view mirror. I’ll savor them for just a moment longer, and then I’ll let them go, grateful for the slowdown; I needed that time to recharge.

Now, something magickal is starting to happen.

I’m ready to get on with the work, whatever that work might be. These feelings aren’t unique to me, they are human and animal nature, and they don’t stop when we walk into the office or log into our virtual workplace. When we accept this changing energy for what it is and work with it, higher productivity, innovative thinking, and happier colleagues follow.

Riding the current and embracing the cycles and seasons of nature allows life to flow a little more freely.

Tips for working with the shifting energy of summer:

  1. Slow down during those actual dog days. Take a vacation. Encourage others to take time off. Schedule fewer meetings (trust me, your clients are experiencing the dog days too.)
  2. Work with the energy of the day. Schedule high energy meetings for the morning when it’s cooler. Keep the afternoons low key.
  3. Tired? Try a thirty-minute cat nap. Use a recorded meditation (one of my favorites is Drawing from the Well by Philip Carr-Gomm) and set your alarm to avoid sleeping for too long.
  4. Try a cooling, serenity tea to refresh the body and spirit — think citrus and mint. See recipe below.*
  5. Gradually start increasing both your physical and mental activities come mid-August.
  6. Back to school shop for yourself. Just a new pen or new bullet journal can get the creative and productive juices going!
  7. For an extra push to restart, carry clear quartz that has been charged under the full moon. This gives me an extra boost of full moon energy when I need it most.
  8. Does your team need an extra boost? If those dog days still have their tentacles wrapped around your team, try an uplifting spray to your meeting room well in advance of the meeting. I like palo santo (that’s ethically sourced) for this purpose. The key is using the spray well in advance to avoid any reactions from colleagues with sensitivities. Alternatively, if you work virtually like I do most of the time, smudge your workspace and your laptop before the meeting. If you’re not on video, try it during the meeting if the energy is low. I also use sage to calm and clear energy during virtual meetings, but that is a topic for another day.

*To create a jar of my favorite summer tea, Serenity Now. Mix the following in a 32 oz jar:

  • Spearmint — 2 cups
  • Peppermint — 1 cup
  • Lemon balm — 1 cup
  • Chamomile — ½ cup
  • Rose petals — ½ cup
  • Lavender — ¼ cup

Whenever you want to enjoy a cup of Serenity Now tea, scoop 1–2 teaspoons and steep for 5–10 minutes. Add sweetener to taste.

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