As a new freelancer, I work from home and — because I live in Seattle (where it rains most of the year) I do not have air conditioning in my home. Well, today this northwest city famous for its cool and cloudy weather has reached a whopping 97° (according to weather.com.) So what can you do to beat the heat when your workspace isn’t climate controlled?
Move your Office
One of the perks about being an independent professional is that all it takes to relocate your office space for the day is a laptop! Pack up your computer, charger, your cell phone and some headphones and move your office to nearest air conditioned coffee shop! If you live in an area where 3 digit temperatures is a normal part of summer, most all your local coffee shops will have the AC cranked up. Here in Seattle, most of our locally owned cafes are just as hot as my home office, so today I opted to partake in some iced coffee from one of the larger chains, Tully’s — who offers iced drinks at only $1.59 all summer and have free Wi-Fi!
Beachwear as Officewear
When you are your own boss, you set the dress code! Your clients will never know if you’re answering emails in flip flops and a bathing suit, trust me — if they could do it, they would too! (maybe they are?)
Cool Drinks & Treats
I start every morning with a nice hot cup of coffee. I admit, I have a caffeine dependence, without it — I am pretty much useless before 10am. When summertime finds you in temperatures better suited for a sauna than an office, try some ice with that caffeine! Iced coffee, iced tea, maybe some chilled fruit or even just a simple glass of ice water will leave you much more refreshed and cool you from the inside out!
Go on Vacation
While temperatures may be skyrocketing in your city, somewhere else it is a nice cool day. Do a little research before planning your summertime vacation and travel during the weeks that will be hottest in your city! If your business is flexible enough that you could work from a new city for an extended period of time, why not go visit that family member or friend who lives on the coast? Sometimes vacation and work can go together!
Go on Meetings
If your clients have cool air conditioned corporate offices, check the weather report and plan to go meet with them on the days when you know it will be the hottest! Or meet with them for a lunch, or ice cream (yes, being a freelancer gives you license to do quirky things like take your clients out to ice cream!)
Change Your Schedule
Since mid-day is usually when the temperature peaks, why not arrange your schedule to allow those hours to be your off time? Go to the bank, pick up some groceries, hit the laundry mat! (or any other errand that involves a visiting a climate controlled building.) You can do more work when the sun sets, I promise your emails will still be there!