5 Tips for Staying Focused and Ending Your Year on a High Note

While the holiday season is an exciting time that many look forward to, there is no denying that it can present some challenges at work. Between team members being out on vacation, year-end wrap-up, and the personal challenges of preparing for and participating in all of the festivities, the threat of distraction and overwhelm is real. Fortunately, with a little planning, there's no reason why you can't enjoy all that this special time of year has to offer AND continue to succeed at work so that you can end your year on a high note. Here are a few tips to help you do just that:

Create your to-do list and prioritize your tasks.

Lists can be a powerful tool when you've got a lot on your plate; sometimes all you need is a visual representation of the situation for your motivation to kick into high gear. When you're feeling stressed, it's all too easy to get hung up on the details - revisiting the big picture will help remind you what's important so that you can focus your energy where it's most valuable. Start with mapping out your major work to-dos and personal commitments, including dates if possible so that you can quickly identify and resolve any conflicts. Then talk with your supervisor to confirm that your priorities align with the needs of the company, and start creating an action plan that makes sense for you. 

Start your year-end tasks early.

Regardless of where you work, there are likely things that need to be done in addition to your regular workload to wrap the current year up and prepare for the one ahead. Whether that's counting physical inventory in a warehouse or prepping financial statements in an office, start as soon as you can! Last-minute panic is no fun for anyone, nor is starting the New Year with lots of loose ends at work. Starting early and doing a bit here and there as you can will help set you up for success while minimizing the stress factor. 

Don't take your work home with you. 

When you've got a busy schedule, it's normal for your mind to wander back to work during your downtime, but whenever possible, redirect your thoughts back to where you are and enjoy the moment. Time with loved ones is what this season is all about - give yourself permission to be present and fully enjoy it! Plus, mental breaks are imperative to your overall wellness. They will help you to be more focused and efficient when you do get back to work, so your to-do list won't feel quite as daunting. 

Take time to celebrate your wins. 

You've worked hard this year, so of course one of the best ways to end your year on a high note is by celebrating your successes! Success comes in many different forms; maybe you learned new skills, honed existing ones, built stronger relationships with your coworkers or customers, or reached for a goal outside your comfort zone and surprised yourself - whatever it is, you should be so proud of yourself for nurturing your professional growth, so take time to enjoy it! 

Brainstorm some exciting goals for the New Year. 

What better way to ignite your motivation and sense of urgency than by having fun things to look forward to? Think of a couple professional and personal goals that you feel passionately about, and use that excitement to fuel your year-end success! Ending your year on a high note will help set you up for success in the New Year, so make choices today that your future self will thank you for!

 

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