Achieving a healthy work-life balance can be tricky any time of the year, but during the holidays it can be extra challenging. Keep reading for some tips on how to create harmony between your work and personal life this holiday season.
Establishing some guidelines prior to the holiday season can help ease the tension created by the demands of work and your commitments to family and friends. We all know that once the holiday season begins, it doesn’t slow down until it’s over. Instead of looking forward to the end of the holidays, and a return to “normal”, plan ahead so that you can enjoy this special time of year with not only your family, but your colleagues as well.
10 Tips for Managing Work & Family Life this Festive Season
The months of November and December, and even January, tend to present the most hectic time of the year for any professional. Competing priorities produce stress during an already stressful time. If thinking about everything you need to do for work, along with all of the holiday family commitments you have, makes you anxious, follow these tips to help achieve some balance.
1.Plan in Advance: If you know the end of the year means huge projects with extended amounts of “work time” needed, schedule the time out so that you don’t get to that overwhelmed space. Use your work calendar to block out enough hours to get the job done and stick to the schedule.
Prioritize the major events happening during the holidays–end of the year reports, school concerts, winter break travel–and put those in your calendar as soon as you know about them. This affords you the opportunity to plan around them.
2.Set Boundaries: Flipping the switch between work time and family time is tough–especially if you work remotely. However, distinguishing between those two worlds is essential to navigating the holiday season. Do not take on extra hours during the holidays; work your mandated hours and work them efficiently so that you can get everything done.
Once you leave the office, leave the office behind you. Do not take work calls or respond to work emails once you are done for the day. Likewise, do not bring your holiday shopping lists to work and shop online when you should be working.
3.Be Present: When you’re at work, focus your energy and attention on getting done what needs to be done. Be intentional about working your way through the day. At the same time, be present for your family and friends when you are with them–don’t think about problems that need to be solved at work.
4.Take a Day Off If You Need It: Don’t be afraid to take a day if you need a day. You work hard the entire year, and these festive months can add a lot to your plate. If you need a day to organize and get some tasks like shopping completed, take the day and get them done.
5.Maintain Your Exercise Routine: If you have an established exercise routine, don’t let it slip away during the holidays. Exercise wards off stress and keeps your mind fresh. If you don’t have a routine, consider parking further away from the office, using the stairs at work, or taking a stroll around the office to add in some extra steps.
6.Let Technology Help You: Technology is your ally in this journey. Use tools and apps that automate or streamline tasks, helping you create more free space in your schedule. Set up reminders for both personal events and professional deadlines, so nothing catches you by surprise.
7.Focus on the Good: It’s difficult not to get caught up in everything that needs to get done but try to focus on why you’re doing what you’re doing. Your career provides for the life you’ve created, and the life you’ve created motivates you and your career. Take a timeout to think about how important both your work, and especially your family is during this time.
8.Include Personal Time: Plan ahead for personal time or family holiday vacations and add these to your calendar as non-negotiables. If you don’t have a big trip planned, plan an hour at the end of each day for the two weeks leading up to your holiday celebration. Take this time to read a book, watch your favorite Netflix show, or just to sit and be still.
9.Spread Holiday Cheer @ the Office: You spend a lot of time with the people you work with, and you should recognize them during this season. Bring in a holiday treat, play Christmas music, or organize a holiday sweater contest in the office. Including the holidays into your work routine can eliminate stress and give you something to look forward to at work.
10.Celebrate Your Successes: Looking back at the end of the year at all that you’ve accomplished in both your professional and personal life is a fantastic way to close out the year. It not only reinforces what you’ve achieved, it puts you in a great frame of mind to accomplish even more in the new year. Share your successes with family and friends and be proud of what you’ve done.
Enjoy your holiday season and refer to these tips from Earnest Images to keep your personal and professional life in harmony this holiday season!