We are British. And that means incessant conversations about the weather. But this isn’t the usual ‘get the paddling pool out’ weather. This is ‘the water in the paddling pool has evaporated in a matter of minutes, and we are considering shaving the dog to ensure its survival’ weather.
The post-pandemic world has allowed us to work from just about wherever we want, for most people, that means working from home. 1% of the UK has air conditioning. And we have just left that 1% so that we can work in more comfort. Oh how ironic, the tables have turned and now we are melting into our laptops.
The icecaps are melting and it’s only going to get hotter. So, in our newly mediterranean United Kingdom, what are we going to do about it? Here’s some tips on how you can keep your cool:
Get on a baggy Tee, whack the shorts on. And for heaven’s sake take your socks off! You are home, free the toe. Gym attire works the best (if you are gym attire inclined) as it is made to keep you cool and comfortable whilst working up a sweat.
Do you remember all of those jokes when we were in the pandemic about people wearing a shirt for meetings but wearing absolutely nothing else? Do that. That is appropriate now. It wasn’t a joke, more of a foretelling of times to come.
Work smarter, not harder. Get your hot water-bottle, and turn it into a cold one. Fill it up and pop it in your freezer for a while.
A bowl of cold water to pop your feet is an absolute godsend if you’re overheating. Just keep your dog in the other room, and you don’t want your pleasant experience ruined by a thirsty dog tucking into some human toe soup.
Is your fan not cool enough? Sounds bonkers, but put something frozen in front of it. I didn’t think it would make much difference until I tried it. And it did make a difference, so try it.
Close the curtains
This is the bit that the rest of Europe understands really well that we are only just getting to grips with. Don’t let the sunlight stream into your house because it will heat up really really quickly. Windows open for ventilation, curtains/blinds drawn to keep Mr. Sun from invading your premises. I know it is beautiful outside and you want to see the summertime in all of its glory, but sitting in cool darkness is a hell of a lot more comfortable.
Drink your H20 in plentiful quantities. The NHS states that you should be drinking 6-8 cups or glasses of water a day. How big these cups or glasses are, we haven’t a clue, but it is certainly larger than a thimble and smaller than a bucket. So start there.
Avoid caffeine too. I am an absolute fiend for a hot cup of stimulating brown bean water, but it can really raise your internal body temperature. Even the colder caffeine drinks can raise your temp too. So be careful.
Cooling your pulse points is a really neat trick and you will be surprised at how quickly it can cool you down. Rather than splashing water on your face, try running your wrists under the cold tap. That newly cooled blood will circulate around your body and make you feel like one cool cucumber.
Grab an ice pack, and pop in on your chest, your temple, your wrists, or your neck for the most effective cooling.
Turn things off. All the things you’re not using. Your charger will be creating a minute amount of heat that will make a difference to the overall temp of your home.
Modify your working hours
If your boss is a reasonable human being, you should be allowed to modify your day to allow for a bit more comfort. Many would opt for an earlier start, to get productive before the sun reaches its zenith and zaps all of your energy.
Many would opt for an earlier start. I am not one of those many.
Therefore a slightly longer break in the middle of the day seems optimal. The Spanish like to have a siesta, but I hold some contention with a midday nap. I do not wake up better for it. I wake up angry that I am not still sleeping, then my whole circadian rhythm is out of whack and I don’t get to bed until 3AM the next day.
But figure it out for yourselves, I haven’t figured out my most optimal way of living yet, but I am sure you are bigger and brighter than me.
There is a reason why people eat salads in the summer. It is filled with water and keeps you cool. Eating too much meat is counterproductive in this sort of weather. When your body breaks down meat, it expends extra energy, which heats you back up. This is called Thermogenisis, but you probably know it as the meat sweats. At Christmas I usually call it Porky Perspiration, but that’s for a different time.
Take your time
Stop rushing about, take your time. The day is hot, long, and the air is thick. So don’t get all flustered, you will only ruin your own day.
Thanks for sticking by me for this little read.