The Christmas season will soon be upon us, and while it’s the most wonderful time of the year, it can also be the busiest for corporate employees. Balancing work responsibilities with Christmas parties and personal commitments can feel like a juggling act, but with effective time management strategies, you can sleigh your workload and enjoy a stress-free time.

Prioritise Your Tasks

One of the first steps to effective time management during the festive season is setting clear priorities. Start by identifying your most important work tasks and projects. Focus on the high-impact, high-value items that align with your end-of-year goals and company objectives and use the 80/20 rule.

The 80/20 Rule Hack

The 80/20 rule often applies: 20% of your tasks will yield 80% of your results. Concentrate on that crucial 20% and make it your priority.

How: “To do this, list out all of the things that you need to get done that day. Then identify which of those tasks have the highest impact. Do any of your tasks involve collaborating with other teammates? Are there any tasks on your plate that are blocking projects from moving forward? These tasks may be simple in execution, but they can make a large impact to the rest of the team by allowing the process to keep flowing.”  Source:

Embrace the Power of Micro-Goals

Set micro-goals throughout the day to maintain focus and motivation. Break down your tasks into small, manageable chunks, and challenge yourself to complete each micro-goal within a specific timeframe.

For example, aim to respond to a certain number of emails within 15 minutes or complete a portion of a project before your coffee break. These micro-goals provide a sense of accomplishment and keep you motivated, making your work tasks feel more achievable amid what can be chaotic.

Block specific time slots for work and be disciplined about sticking to those schedules. Allocate time for focused work sessions and use time management techniques like the Pomodoro technique, which involves working in short, concentrated bursts with regular breaks.

Review the Workload

If you look after a team, schedule a meeting for January to evaluate the workload and review if an additional member of staff is required to meet business objectives.

Having scheduled the meeting for next year, and recording any initial thoughts will give you space to think about completing the year, knowing you have made the first step to planning.

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Eliminate Distractions

During the holiday season, distractions can be especially tempting. Social events, online shopping, and decorations can easily pull you away from your tasks.

A good tip is to try and create a distraction-free work environment by turning off non-essential notification, closing any unused tabs on your browser and programs not in use. Having a clear workspace can be super helpful too, (sweeping those Quality Street wrappers into the bin eliminates calories consumed, right?!)

Mobile phones light up more at this time of year as well, how about muting any busy group chats and using silent or even flight mode on your phone? This can work wonders for concentration.

Set Realistic Goals

As the holiday season progresses, set realistic daily and weekly goals. Avoid overloading yourself with unattainable expectations. Instead, establish achievable objectives that allow you to make steady progress while leaving time for celebration and relaxation. Too many festive obligations can take away much needed energy for work responsibilities and all-important personal time.

Holiday Communications

Don’t forget to set up a personalised out of office message for your inbox when you are out of the office and when you will return. If you are out during office opening times, communicating the details of who to contact if the email is urgent is useful too and will give you peace of mind.

Remember to record a new message for your voice mail so any calls from colleagues and clients will know when you will return and what action to take if their call is urgent.

Take Breaks and Recharge

The Christmas season can be draining, so it’s crucial to take regular breaks and recharge. Step away from your desk for two minutes, go for a walk on lunch break, or listen to a calm podcast. It makes all the difference to your workload as a refreshed mind is more productive and creative than an overwhelmed one.

Maintain a Positive Mindset

Last but not least, maintain a positive mindset. The holiday season should provide time for relaxation and celebration. Stay motivated by focusing on the sense of accomplishment when you complete tasks and look forward to the well-deserved holiday break.

We hope these tips will help you to achieve a work-life balance that allows you to feel refreshed when starting a brand-new year at work. You will hit the ground running in January 2024.

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Anne Hanna ‐ November 8, 2023