How Spending More Time in the Sun Can Help Your Career And Confidence

Cheerful guy with laptop and earphones sitting in park while drinking juice and smiling at camera
Photo by Andrea Piacquadio from Pexels

Young professionals are always on the lookout for ways to change their lives for the better. As we’ve detailed in our previous article, embracing healthy habits is one practical step that helps you obtain a more balanced life. This can benefit your physical and mental health, thereby laying the groundwork for personal growth. It also helps you build an optimistic outlook on your career journey.

While building habits that promote overall health may sound like a complex endeavor, it can actually start with a surprisingly simple step: basking in the sun. Below, we take a closer look at how this healthy habit holds the potential to elevate not only your well-being but also your career and confidence.

The Impact of the Outdoors

The benefits of delving into nature’s embrace extend beyond the simple enjoyment of the outdoors — it's also a powerful stimulant for confidence, mental health, personal development, and career advancement. 2022 research published in Frontiers in Psychology confirmed that employees who dedicated more time to natural outdoor environments experienced a notable surge in well-being, including reduced stress and anxiety. In fact, as little as 10 minutes spent outdoors significantly improved psychological and physiological markers of mental well-being, such as better heart rate, blood pressure, mood, and attention.

These findings are especially important as work-related stress increases exponentially around the world, leading to significant economic implications for both workers and organizations. Therefore, the simple act of stepping outside can be a game-changer. Researchers reinforce this notion by exploring how time outdoors positively influences productivity. Sunlight exposure, as noted by Dr. Casey Means, chief medical officer of Levels, acts as energetic information for our brains and cells, influencing mood, energy levels, and ultimately, productivity. The study suggests that just two cumulative hours per week spent outdoors can impact self-assessments of health and well-being, creating a positive feedback loop that enhances productivity over time.

Initiating Your Sunlit Journey

Recognizing the importance of breaks to recharge your brain, clinical psychologist Dr. Allison Chase emphasizes that the correlation between hours worked and consistent productivity is not absolute. Weaving sunlit moments into your daily schedule can actually significantly contribute to renewed focus and efficiency. A short lunch break outdoors, a morning workout in the park, or an afternoon brainstorming session on your patio can make a substantial difference.

However, as you bask in the sun's rejuvenating glow, it is paramount to prioritize sun protection. This is crucial to prevent lifelong conditions from UV rays exposure. Your typical button-down can help cover your skin to prevent melanoma, but shielding your eyes with sunglasses to slow the progression of cataracts or macular degeneration requires a bit more care. Look for professional-looking frames that are safe to wear in the office, such as Ray-Ban’s iconic Wayfarer or even the latest Tiffany & Co. eyewear collection. Consider opting for photochromic lenses as well. These react to the amount of UV hitting the lens, ensuring your eyes remain protected during your outdoor breaks while effortlessly transitioning back to a clear lens when you return indoors.

Don’t forget that the need for style, functionality, and better health extends beyond your outfit and towards your other possessions in your journey to embrace the outdoors, especially in the warmer months as the risk of heatstroke rises. Try out the trendy Stanley Quencher Cups, which come in every colorway and can hold up to 40 oz. These water bottles have gained immense popularity among wellness influencers as hydration has become synonymous with success. You can choose a bottle in a neutral color to blend in with your office’s surroundings and personalize it with charms or stickers as needed. This can encourage you to choose water over soft drinks, juice, or sports drinks so that you stay well-hydrated inside and outside the office.

By heeding these lessons, you can better understand that spending time outdoors is not just a leisurely pursuit — it's a strategic investment in your well-being and professional success. For more on personal development, check out our other content on AFA Education.