It’s the most wonderful (and stressful) time of the year. December is a busy month in lots of offices and workplaces.
As people prep for the new year, get ready for the Christmas rush and try to stay on top of targets during ”silly season” it’s no wonder that things can start to seem a little bit chaotic.
Whether you sink or swim is all about how you handle the madness. Here are just a few of our top tips for staying on top of everything so you can actually enjoy the holiday season.
Find your place
Like it or not, sitting at the same desk all day is usually not conducive to good work. If you can, mix up your workspace often. Instead of staying in the same location where you do urgent, tactical work, move to a different place when it’s time to do the important stuff. This might mean booking a boardroom, working from home or going to a café. Escaping the chaos of an open plan office is sometimes the key to productivity.
Spread a little cheer
The easiest way to get away from a negative mindset is to do something for others. Buy a coworker a coffee or offer to take someone for lunch. These little things might seem very insignificant or maybe even a little corny but they can make a huge difference to your mood. Physically doing something for others will help you to move past the chaos.
When things seem overwhelming sometimes the best thing you can do is completely remove yourself from the situation. Step outside, go for a walk or make a phone call. Leave the stress behind you and take a moment just for yourself. You will come back to the situation feeling refreshed and ready to take on the challenge.
Cut through the chaos and write down a set list of tasks that you would like to complete this week. Then, set priorities based on the information that you have. Complete your projects one by one, factoring in deadlines and other constraints. This will help you to feel more in control.
We usually think of zoning out during work hours as a bad thing but you can use it to your advantage. If everyone around you is stressed or anxious this can have a negative effect on your mood. Pop in your headphones, put on your favourite playlist and ignore everything else that is going on. Focus on your own work first and then you can try to help others.
Learn when to say no
Saying no isn’t always easy, especially when you can see the chaos unfolding around you but sometimes it is necessary. Remember that you were hired to do your job, not someone else’s. If something falls outside your remit or you simply don’t have the bandwidth to help it’s perfectly okay to say no. Most people will respect you for it.