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Survive tropical temperatures on a working day using these tips

30°C outside and you’re stuck inside your office behind your computer: fun times. Luckily there are a variety of countermeasures to combat the heat and get through your workday without a head that looks like an overgrown tomato.

Summer hasn’t started yet, but we're already expecting tropical temperatures this week with 30°C and more. Great when you’re picnicking in a park while wearing a light summer dress or swimming trucks, however, for most of us it's business as usual. And because we will probably –hopefully- be experiencing some more hot days, we’ve listed some tips in advance to make those tropical working days a bit more bearable. Although we do apologize: working next to a pool or wet T-shirt contests with colleagues aren’t part of our list of tips.

Drink, drink and drink

The fact that alcohol and warm weather do not go together is already widely known. And we guestimate that the average employee doesn’t sit behind his desk with a bottle of wine. However, coffee is also something to avoid when it’s hot outside; caffeine tends to dry you out and it also raises your body temperature. On hot days, water will always be the best pick to quench your thirst. Make sure it’s not too cold either because when we drink cold drinks our body will compensate for the temperature drop by heating up, therefore it’s best to consummate water at room temperature. Protip: Sick of all that room temperature water? Add a slice of lemon and it’ll freshen up your drink or switch it up with a lukewarm herbal tea. Be sure to drink enough though! When your body dries out you will surely get into a slump.

Tropical temperatures, tropical habits

Why not start working a bit earlier? Temperatures are usually a lot more bearable during the early morning than during the afternoon. If your manager allows it, you could start working at 7 in the morning and leave at 16 o’clock. That way you’ll avoid a big chunk of the warmest hours AND you’ll be able to combat the hottest hours of the day at an outside bar or in your garden.

Dress down

Dressing in shorts and flip-flops to work is something not many employers will applaud, but a dress-code doesn’t mean that your hands are tied. Go for light clothing that isn’t a tight fit: that way warmth can easily escape your body. Do you have to dress in a suit? Ignore synthetic fabrics and go for cotton, linen or extra-light wool.
Last but not least: Go for light coloured clothing, light coloured clothing repels warmth rather than absorbing it. Scared to take outfit risks? Talk to your manager. Unless they come from a tropical place they will surely understand.

Don’t be hotheaded

We all get it: working on a hot day, with sweaty palms and while sweat is dripping down your forehead is annoying. Very annoying in fact. Getting wound up over that fact will actually do more harm than good. Accept that fact that you’ll most probably be less productive than on a winters day, that isn’t abnormal. Limit the damage by putting your energy in what really counts (you can’t change the temperatures after all).

More green

This tip will come unexpected, still: place more plants in your working environment. Even within the office walls they will be able to control temperatures while also making the air healthier. The fact that they all lower stress levels, is a nice added bonus.

Keep the sun outside

If your office doesn’t have blinds, then be sure to advocate their merits with your manager. Blinds placed on the outside of the window work best (the difference can be up to 2°C with blinds placed on the inside!). Protip: drop the blinds before the first rays of sunlight hit your window, otherwise the warmth will already have entered the building and won’t be able to escape again. The chance of tanning behind your window is pretty much non-existent anyway.

Heavy-duty resources

Did you succumb to the heat, or aren’t you able to keep the warmth out of your office? Place a cherry pit pillow in the deep freeze and place it behind your neck or back when the warmth gets to you. It might look a bit silly but it’s better than sitting right in front of a fan.
Placing a couple of ice cubes in a towel is a good replacement if you haven’t got a cherry pit pillow. Do mind the melting water though, you don’t want to get your clothes wet.

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