13 Ways To Banish Holiday Stress At Work

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When the going gets tough at the office this season, follow these tips to help you relieve holiday stress at work.

RELATED: 11 Ways To Have A Stress-Free Holiday Season

In this article:

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  1. Have a Schedule
  2. Make a Plan and Execute Properly
  3. Set Boundaries
  4. Negotiate with Your Employer or Coworker
  5. Consider Moving Holiday Plans to a Later Date
  6. Avoid Unrealistic Expectations
  7. Take Your Time
  8. Remember to Express Gratitude
  9. Learn Computer Shortcuts
  10. Remember Your Goal for the Holidays
  11. Be The Gift That Keeps On Giving
  12. Focus on the Now
  13. Enjoy Your Time Due To, or Even in Spite Of, Holiday Work

How to Reduce Holiday Stress at Work | Holiday Stress Management Tips

1. Have a Schedule

Regardless of when it is, it’s important to have a schedule at work. Even more so during the holiday season since you want to get as much done before you go on break for the holidays.

After all, who wants to be thinking about work when they’re at home opening gifts or spending quality time with loved ones? Follow a schedule so you don’t stress yourself out at the last minute when you need to cram everything before the break.

Here are some tips to help you create a schedule to help you avoid holiday stress at work:

  • Have either a digital or a physical copy of your schedule instead of relying on memory. A schedule in black and white can also help you stay focused and manage your time better.
  • Use a timer so you can track your time and ensure you’re following your schedule.
  • Don’t be too rigid. Even if you have a schedule, leave some room for flexibility since pushing yourself too much can also be stressful.

2. Make a Plan and Execute Properly

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Writing down your schedule is the first step but sticking to it needs effort and consistency.

Having a schedule is only the first step. What’s more crucial is how you follow through.

Once you have your schedule, create an action plan of how you’ll finish everything within your timeline. Here are some things you can do to help you stay on track with your plan:

  • Make an itinerary.
  • Contact the people who you may need to get in touch with. This is essential since some people may take leave during the holidays.
  • Prepare any supplies, reports, or presentations. This can help you avoid getting stressed when you get back to the office once the holidays have ended.

3. Set Boundaries

While it’s crucial to finish as much as possible before the holiday break starts, you should learn to set limits. This means not overworking or pushing yourself to your breaking point to finish everything before the holidays start.

This is why the schedule you’ve set for yourself is flexible and should include breaks. Don’t let the holiday work rush drain you so much that you end up too exhausted to enjoy the holidays.

4. Negotiate with Your Employer or Coworker

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Knowing how to properly negotiate can help you improve yourself. At the same time, it can make life easier.

If you’re hoping to take an early leave for the holidays, you can try negotiating with your boss to let you go. If your boss already agrees, you may also need to talk to a coworker to take your calls or do some minor routine tasks you’re leaving behind while you’re gone.

Here are some easy negotiation tips to help you:

  • Talk about what they can gain from your proposal. In the case of your boss, you may offer to come back earlier than the rest, while you can offer to cover for your coworker the next time they need to take a leave.
  • Be patient and listen. Remember, you’re asking a favor so you also have to hear out what the other person has to say.
  • Know your worth, and follow your gut.

5. Consider Moving Holiday Plans to a Later Date

If you need to come to work on a holiday, you don’t have a choice but to move your plans. If the holidays are fast approaching and you still have a ton of work left, consider moving your holiday plans.

After all, it’s better to take a leave and be relaxed than be away in the office physically but not mentally.

6. Avoid Unrealistic Expectations

You may expect to finish work within a set period. However, sometimes, deadlines get extended and things change.

Be prepared for this, so you don’t get too disappointed when this happens.

You can also ask people who are doing the same tasks as you how much time they’re taking for their tasks. In this way, you can set expectations and rethink your schedule and plan as needed.

Don’t worry if you need to work on a holiday. It’s better for your stress levels to finish your work rather than take a leave and become overworked when you return from holiday.

RELATED: 7 Advantages Of Flexible People In The Workplace

7. Take Your Time

Female manager working at her desk | Ways To Banish Holiday Stress At Work | how to relieve stress at work
Whether you’re still at work or you’re already taking a break during the holiday, don’t rush things. Take your time since haste can also lead to waste.

The holidays can already be stressful as-is, so try to avoid adding on top of that. Ease up on yourself and do what you can.

8. Remember to Express Gratitude

Even if you have a lot of work that can delay or even cancel your holiday plans, find it in yourself to still be thankful.

Having a grateful heart not only makes you happier and less stressed, but it also makes you more efficient. A positive mindset can increase your mental stamina, which is important if you’re working on something critical and complex.

9. Learn Computer Shortcuts

If you work primarily with Microsoft Office, like Excel, you may want to learn shortcuts online. This can help you finish your work faster.

10. Remember Your Goal for the Holidays

If you have your schedule and plan already prepared and you simply need to motivate yourself, remember why you work.

Your work gives you opportunities and financial stability to enjoy your life and provide a life for your family. Remember this, and you’ll get a push to persevere.

11. Be the Gift That Keeps On Giving

Man and woman holding hands | Ways To Banish Holiday Stress At Work | office stress relief
De-stress through helping others.

One way to decompress during this season and to take things into perspective is to help others in need. While it may sound counterintuitive, most people can forget their worries and troubles if they’re helping others.

12. Focus on the Now

Getting distracted can take you away from your work. This can become stressful for two reasons:

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  • Your thoughts can take your focus away from work, which can keep you from finishing your work. Not finishing your work on time (which can potentially ruin your holiday plans) can become stressful.
  • Your thoughts might also consist of stressful things, such as worrying about your holiday plans or figuring out how to finish everything you need to do on time.

13. Enjoy Your Time Due to, or Even in Spite Of, Holiday Work

Take your holiday work as a puzzle to solve or as a challenge to conquer. By changing your mindset about your tasks, you’ll have a lower mental obstacle about motivation to finish.

You can also take the task as a group project with close coworkers as a bonding experience.

As long as you enjoy or at least not hate what you’re doing, you can finish your work and start enjoying your holiday activities earlier.

Hopefully, these ways to avoid holiday stress at work can help you manage to find a balance at work and your holiday plans. As long as you know how to take care of your work before the holidays or holiday work, you won’t miss the magic of the holidays.

What are some sources of holiday stress at work for you? How do you deal with it? Share your experiences in the comments section below.

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