The holiday season can be a joyous time to gather with loved ones and give thanks for all that happened over the previous year. It can also be a stressful time for many, whether due to hectic work schedules, too much political talk around the dinner table or an endless number of other reasons. In the nonprofit world, you may find yourself struggling to survive this particular holiday season by balancing strict fundraising deadlines with various family commitments.
If you are seeking out ways to thrive over the holidays, you must first stop pressuring yourself to be happy, enjoy yourself or be involved. Only after you slow down, take a deep breath and appreciate the small moments, will you be able to get through the holidays with your sanity firmly intact. Looking for other ways to make it through? Here are a few suggestions from Gail Perry about how you can not only get through the holidays, but actually enjoy them:
“Take time to appreciate each moment.”
Do you really have to undertake that next project, party or assignment?
We understand that you want to abide by your to-do list and feel good about checking everything off by New Year’s Day. However, sometimes adding just one extra thing to your already crammed plate may be the unexpected tipping point to throw you off balance. Instead of saying yes to everything, take a step back and really contemplate whether or not you need to single handedly launch the next round of thank-you emails to your donor base, or bake homemade cookies for everyone on your staff. Maybe you can enlist someone else’s help or consider premade desserts this year.
Are you going overboard with holiday cheer or avoiding it altogether?
It’s far too easy to become a holiday cheer enthusiast or a Scrooge during this time of year. While both extremes are within your own right, they may wear you out during these final months of the year. Either you’ll get worn down trying to give gifts and spread cheer to everyone in your office, or become a holiday recluse and fail to participate in fun gatherings. Try to strike a good balance to survive the holidays in one piece.
Are you finding time to appreciate the small moments and gestures?
Whether you’re catching up with your cousins at the Thanksgiving dinner table or chatting with co-workers at the annual Christmas party, take time to appreciate each moment of your holiday season. Surviving the holidays is not about keeping your head down and getting through it. It’s about enjoying yourself and not being afraid to log out of your work email once and a while.
There are numerous other ways you can come out on top professionally and personally during the holiday season. Take some of this advice and seek out more, as only you can ensure how well you survive the holidays.