Here come the holidays! I've curated a short list of some easy things you can do now, and every day, to keep yourself organized and ready to win personally and professionally.
We all know that life gets crazy. Even the most successful of people have stress, deal with conflict, have to bounce back when something doesn’t go as planned, and have insane schedules to manage. I’m sure you’ve heard many ideas on how to manage the stress and embrace chaos and I can personally say that I’ve attended plenty of leadership seminars/classes and have read books to help me optimize my time/life. Ultimately, what it boils down to though are 5 consistent themes that I’ve decided align with all the messages others have put out there as well as my own personal thoughts on embracing chaos.
Prioritize - Know what’s important to you and those you hold close and keep those things at the top of the list.
Create a plan - Let’s talk specifically about how you can attack the holidays here. Two words: Make Lists <period> If you have an idea of everything you have/want to accomplish over the next week or even couple of months, the odds of you getting it all done increases significantly. Now this doesn’t mean write down every. single. thing. you think you need to do, but rather write down the things that are absolute priorities (i.e. buying gifts, wrapping gifts, sending cards, baking something special <don’t worry…we’ll help you out on that one soon!>, and MAXIMIZING the time you have with your loved ones. I’ll share my list soon, but don’t forget to KEEP IT SIMPLE. A great example of planning for success was recently published by one of my personal favorites…Martha Stewart. You can read it here.
Say NO - This one really aligns to the first point I made. If something doesn’t align with your priorities, it’s ok to say ‘no.’ If you say yes to everything, you will find yourself stressed and overwhelmed because it won’t align with the things you’ve deemed important and thereby won’t add value.
Schedule ‘Me’ Time (Take a page out of Lily's book from the pic above...) - Even the most extrovert-y of extroverts needs time to decompress. Make sure you have some time scheduled in each week to do something you enjoy…by yourself. Whether it means you meditate, go to a coffee shop (um, yes please!), take an extra-long shower, hit the gym for a class you normally let yourself out of, or just reminding yourself to take a deep breath every now and then. Every little bit helps you make sure you’ll be present for those you love.
Work to turn stressors into non-threatening tasks to overcome - Realize that a mess in the kitchen just means one extra rag. The huge pile of laundry means a couple loads spread out over a couple of days (it doesn’t mean do it all now or ELSE). It’s so easy to see every task you have to tackle and think you’ll never get it done, but if you continually remind yourself that these things aren’t the end of the world, you can focus and just get the tasks done.