The holiday season is upon us, and while for many, it’s a joyous time of the year, it comes with its share of financial challenges. If you are not careful, this month can be a drain on your finances. It’s not uncommon for people to suffer depressive feelings during this time due to:
- unrealistic expectations
- financial hardship
Throw in the pandemic and this is a tough time for anyone. With that in mind, there is something you should consider for yourself, that’s cost-effective and a good use of your time during the holidays: investing in some self-care.
What can you do to take care of yourself?
Try to maintain healthy boundaries. In business, there’s a propensity in unhealthy work environments to treat the “abbreviated weeks” as an opportunity to cram 40 hours into fewer days. Set healthy boundaries with your office. Treat nationally recognized holidays as vacation — even a stay-cation. Burnout is real and can lead to unnecessary stress. Turn Slack off, set your work email to “away” and don’t only answer your work calls in the event of an emergency.
Focus on being grateful. There is an entrepreneur mindset that can lead to impatience. You may be one signature away from securing a client or completing a work order, but like most other businesses, you’ll need to wait until after the holidays. Rather than worry about what’s to come or rushing through the holiday, be in the present, content with the state you’re in. Ambition doesn’t die overnight, there’ll be plenty of work to do when you and the rest of the country reopen.
Gift yourself some ‘me time’. Many people this holiday are seeking to regain some normalcy, traveling and hosting parties. However, given the pandemic and the stressful economic landscape, take this opportunity to decline invitations. As yet another silver lining of the pandemic, you don’t need an excuse to decline invitations. Steal yourself away from further commotion and chaos and come up with activities that make you invest in yourself.
Exercise whenever it is possible. Working nonstop is draining and especially in the startup world, it’s all too easy to put your “physical health” in the “important but not urgent” quadrant of your day-to-day. With the national holiday however, why not tend to that quadrant in particular. If everyone is shut down anyway, focus on exercise and eating healthier. Take care of yourself to ensure you’re at your peak when the New Year starts. You may enjoy the momentum and energy from “working,” but “working out” will provide the same (if not more) chemicals to feel energized, empowered and optimistic. Even if you do decide to travel, try running around the block or following exercise videos.
Take an online course to develop yourself. During the holiday, you may be tempted to only buy gifts for others, but consider an investment in yourself. Book yourself in an online course to pick up some new skills. Many platforms offer affordable courses online courses (with discounts around the holidays). Learning something new will strengthen your memory, lead to innovation, and potentially increase your efficiency.
Despite the holiday cheer, it can be a rough time of year for many. And whether your business has suffered with COVID-19 or is on the cusp of launching, sometimes hitting “pause” is just what we need for clarity. For many, there’s a “ready, fire, aim” around this time of year, so take a breath, so you can emerge in the New Year rejuvenated.