The holidays are a busy time of year for everyone, but e-store owners have the added challenge of managing a thriving business in the midst of holiday madness. The extra pressure can build up fast and take its toll. No one needs to get sick or have a nervous breakdown a week before Christmas. Here are a few simple ways to take care of yourself during the holidays.
On the first day of Christmas...Schedule your time.
It’s tempting to devote your days and nights to your business at the holidays--this is the most important time of the year after all, right? But you won’t be efficient glued to your screen 16 hours a day. Plan chunks of time to get specific tasks done, and plan time to spend with family, friends, or just relaxing. You need a balance to be productive.
On the second day of Christmas...Plan workouts.
Whether it’s shoveling snow or going for a jog, you need to keep moving! Exercise keeps your mood up and the eggnog calories off.
On the third day of Christmas...Get up and move around.
It’s just as important to get up and take regular breaks while you’re working as it is to schedule exercise. Flex those knees and stretch out those wrists!
On the fourth day of Christmas...Eat healthy.
It’s difficult this time of year, but try to resist overindulging in holiday treats. Keep healthy snacks like veggie sticks and low-fat yoghurt around if you plan on putting in a few extra hours. Save the desserts for meal times and special moments.
On the fifth day of Christmas…Put your computer away.
Yes, you are allowed to unplug during the holidays. Set aside blocks of time to shut down your computer and forget about work. When you log back on, you’ll be refreshed and focused. Setting boundaries in this way will make you more efficient at work and more present during social time.
On the sixth day of Christmas…Drink water.
Sorry if we sound like your mother, but yes, you do need to drink 8 glasses or about 1.5 liters of water a day to stay healthy and alert. This is even more important if your December tends to be awash in bubbly.
On the seventh day of Christmas…Communicate.
Stay in touch with your customers and communicate early if you see weather or supply-related delays on the horizon. Being proactive will protect you from customer ire and make managing the post-holiday exchange and return period less stressful.
On the eighth day of Christmas…Prioritize
Not everything is going to make or break your holiday performance, so prioritize and get the essentials done first. Then, if you have the time and motivation, do a few less important tasks. But stay realistic, or you’ll miss out on what the holidays are really about: friends, family and sugar cookies, lots of sugar cookies.
On the ninth day of Christmas…Meditate.
Take some time for yourself, even if it’s just ten or twenty minutes in the morning or at the end of the day. Settle down in a quiet spot and focus on your breath to quiet your mind and let go of whatever stress is currently weighing you down. Meditation won’t make your problems go away, but you’ll be better prepared to tackle them after a moment of calm and self-care.
On the tenth day of Christmas…Get up early.
The early bird gets the worm...and she gets to enjoy the rest of the day with a clear conscience. If you can get up at 5 or 6 o’clock in the morning, you’ll have two or three hours of calm before the rest of the world gets going. If you concentrate on getting a maximum of work done then, you’ll have more than enough time for a nap in front of the fireplace later on.
On the eleventh day of Christmas…Volunteer.
Volunteering is not everyone’s cup of tea, but it can be a great opportunity to step back and see the big picture. Your business is important, but it’s just one aspect of your life. You’re part of a community that keeps your business alive and giving back feels great. Volunteering is also an opportunity to spend meaningful time with friends and family, which will also help keep your stress in check.
On the twelfth day of Christmas...Say no.
Sometimes the best thing to do is simply to not do. It’s okay if you can’t get it all done. You’re better off saying no to an invitation or rescheduling a non-vital task to tomorrow if trying to fit everything in is going to leave you frazzled. The holidays are important because they generate a lot of revenue, but don’t let that become such an obsession that it ruins the rest of the experience.
What do you do to stay sane at the holidays? Let us know in the comments below!