Productivity Improvement | 12.07.2016

Give yourself the gift of time this holiday season

The end of the year is an exciting time to look forward to. There are parties and gifts to be exchanged between friends, there are get-togethers, out-of-town plans. You decide to finish all your work in time so you can take that well-deserved break and head out for a vacation.

But before you set off, there are countless things that occupy your mind and time. Finishing the gift shopping, making your way through the crowds, the planning for the vacation and the shopping for the vacation.And don’t even get us started on the work that doesn’t seem to end. The emails, the phone calls, the meeting – everything pilling up just as you want to get everything done.

Ever heard of personal task management? Instead of stressing and worrying, here are tips to help you manage your life better and gift yourself time this holiday season.

#1 Make a list

The first personal productivity tip is to put all your tasks out on a list. Believe us, it really works. Take a sheet of paper and divide it into two columns. Fill one with the things you have to do outside to get ready for the holiday season. On the other side put down all the things you need to at home.

Here are some handy tips on how to create an effective to-do list.

#2 Revisit the list of things to do

Just because you’ve put something down doesn’t mean you have to get in to a whirlwind act to get everything done. Re-look your list and keep only the most essential activities.

#3 Start well in advance

You don’t have to get started on your holiday activities a week before. If you start well in advance, managing time is much easier. The decoration, the shopping, the cooking (some, if not all) can all be done any time before. By spreading out activities this way you allow yourself the freedom to actually enjoy the season and reduce stress.

#4 Ask for help

However much you enjoy the planning and all the other activities of the holiday season you don’t need to do it all by yourself. Establish a personal productivity system to get things in order.

Hire a cleaning service to clean your home, get some of the festival delicacies from your local store rather than making them all yourself, and instead of calling everyone over for a meal, head out instead so you can actually enjoy the family meal.

#5 Shop online

Do you really want to step out in the crowd and jostle elbows with fellow shoppers when the entire shopping world opens up on your smartphone or laptop?

#6 Planning prevents anxiety

Stepping out for an errand? Stop a minute and think about all that you can do while out. You don’t; want to make the same journey twice or thrice or more often because you didn’t remember all that you needed to do. Which is why, lists. Pre-plan, plan and combine your trips.

#7 Make chores fun

This is similar to the earlier point we made on why you need help. There is always something about the holiday chores that someone hates. Instead of putting it off, turn it into a fun activity where everyone participates. Could be writing the cards or putting up the lights, or anything else that takes time and effort.

#8 Take your time

Everything needn’t be done all at once. Plan well in advance and you can take your time getting ready for the holiday season. The delicacies, the decoration, the gifts – all done well in time for the holidays. Remember, you’re not superman.

#9 Put aside time for enjoyment

Visit friends or just spend a lovely evening with the family doing nothing except living in the moment. The holiday tensions will drop off on their own.

#10 Plan for next year

Start planning for next year with the ideas that popped into your head this time. Decoration, gifts and other supplies will be cheaper and there’ll be no rush either.

Our last tip, just enjoy the holidays!