🎶 It’s the most wonderful time of the year. There’ll be budgets to make, cookies to bake and presents to top with a bow. There’ll be tight deadlines and calendars booked with events scheduled long long ago. It’s the most wonderful time of the year.🎶
I’m guessing that I’m not the only one that feels like this. While the holiday season can be fun and merry, it can also be exhausting. Your already booked schedule is now bursting at the seams. You have school Christmas programs to attend, family get-togethers, office parties, and a long shopping list that demands your attention.
On top of that, the end of the year deadlines are rolling around at work and people are taking extra time off which makes it hard to connect with those you are trying to get in touch with.
So, yes, this time of year can be wonderful. But it can also be overwhelming and exhausting if you aren’t careful. We are getting ready to power through the final full week leading up until Christmas and you may already find yourself feeling behind and pulled in too many directions.
Here are a few tips to keep in mind as you work – and live – through the last few weeks of the year.
1. Get serious about setting priorities
You are probably familiar with setting priorities at work, especially if you’re using the SPEARity app. But not as many people set priorities in their personal life. Now is the time to get serious about both.
With limited time left in the year, you need to choose where your focus needs to be. Get realistic about what your deadlines need to be at work. And, be realistic about what you can squeeze in at home. You may not be able to hit every family/friend get-together, or maybe you need to set a limit on how long you stay. Maybe, that huge Christmas dinner isn’t as necessary as eating something that’s easier to pull together so you can enjoy time with your loved ones.
Unfortunately, no one else can set your priorities for you. It’s something that you’ll need to do yourself.
2. Don’t neglect your mental health
It’s easy when things get busy to stop doing the things that keep you feeling good. As your schedule fills up, it’s easy to think that these are the things that you can afford to cut. However, that’s not true.
Cutting out things like sleep, exercise, and eating a balanced diet can have a negative impact on your physical and mental health, which is not what you need when you’re already pushed to the limits.
You may not be able to stick to your regular workout routine completely or you might eat a few more treats than normal, but don’t use this time to let all of your good habits fall to the wayside. Look for time to do things that you enjoy whether it’s going for a walk by yourself, journaling, reading a book, or whatever else helps you out.
3. Be present where you are
Technology makes it even harder to be present in the moment, but do your best to stick to it. When you are at work, or on business time, keep your attention on business. This isn’t the time to jump on Amazon to order last-minute presents or make out the shopping list of ingredients that you need to buy for Christmas dinner. Stick to your work tasks and work your plan.
Then, when you are at home or with family or friends, focus on them. Don’t try to figure out an obstacle you are facing in business while your kids are frosting the cookies. Cherish the personal time that you have. Focus on the people that are around you.
4. Don’t try to do it all on your own
If there was ever a time for delegating, this is it. Find ways that you can delegate tasks at work. Make sure that your attention is being focused on the tasks that need it and delegate the others.
Then, do the same thing at home. This isn’t the time to be controlling over the tree having to look just right or the presents having to be perfectly wrapped. Allow your family to help you, especially kids if you have them. And, if you’re hosting a get-together, don’t be afraid to allow others to bring a dish to pass.
5. Focus on the good
Remember, not everything is going to be perfect and that’s OK. Remembering this can help you take some of the pressure off of yourself during this busy time. Take time to look around you and be grateful for the people and things that you have both at work and at home. This time of year might not look exactly like you want it to, but focus on what is good.
Taking advantage of coaching
If the end of the year is more of a struggle than you want it to be, business coaching can help. The skills that you learn through coaching will help you not only in your business but in your personal life as well.
If you don’t already have a coach, give our SPEARity coaches a call to explore your options. We are SPEARity, a local Milwaukee leadership coaching firm that specializes in business coaching, executive coaching, and leadership development training.