Seven Ways to Stay Productive During the Holidays
“The elevator to success is out of order. You’ll have to use the stairs… one step at a time.” — Joe Girard
The holidays are upon us again – and this is no time to let your mind wander and your productivity slip in both personal and professional tasks. With so much to do during the holiday season, it is easy to let feeling of overwhelm start to stack up as the emails mount and TO-DO list gets longer by the minute.
These seven steps will help you be more productive during the holidays:
- Turn off Non-Essential Electronic Communications: This is perhaps the hardest things for most people to do – turn off emails, smart phones, and electronic devices to just work. When phones and email constantly buzz, it breaks the flow of concentration and interrupts what you are doing in the moment. By taking one hour to simply work without checking email or responding to calls, it is often easier to be productive until the end of a project.
- Go Solo: Working in a team can be difficult if you are consistently waiting on others to produce results. If you can work by yourself or even just get a few minutes on your own to get ahead it can relieve some of the pressure of waiting on the group of deliver the goods.
- Drink Better Coffee: This could translate into eat a better breakfast, but if you are not a breakfast person, then drink better coffee. The point is that a little extra indulging can help you relax by adding a flavored creamer or stopping by to pick up a special pumpkin spiced coffee can be just the thing to turn turmoil into a treat.
- Start Early / Finish Sooner: During the holiday season, we tend to rush and stay over to get things done. The start early – stay late syndrome does not help productivity because it causes a drain on the mind and the body. Instead, start and finish at fixed times. This creates a routine for your body and fights against fatigue.
- Expect Delays: The most frustrating part about the holidays is often the delays. Everyone is so busy – the lines are longer, it takes longer to return a call…it even takes longer to make a decision! If you build in extra time and understand that everything takes longer, then your patience will remain intact and your productivity stay higher because your expectations will match reality.
- Ease The Holidays / Happiness: During the holiday season, it is easy to fall into HOLIDAY HUMBUG – especially if everyone around you becomes a Christmas convert all at once and starts to deck the halls. Stay focused on the task at hand and eases into the holiday celebrations at your own pace without succumbing to the pressure to jump into everything at once. This will relieve some of the crushing feelings of everything you need to do and take little steps into being involved in the holiday season.
- Just Breathe and Relax: Because of the rush to attend events, buy gifts, and complete everything that needs to be done, many people forget to just stop and breathe. A few deep, cleansing breaths can help you focus your attentions back on the task at hand and clear your mind.
Although the path to productivity during the holiday season can be difficult, the trick to navigating the troubled waters of is staying focused on the smaller steps staying and taking each task one at a time.