The Christmas holidays are just days away, with some offices due to shut down for the whole Christmas and New Year period.
However, many British employers will not enjoy this time away in its entirety – with many admitting to continuously checking emails, taking work-related calls or completing pieces of work, when they should be taking a break.
Understandably, taking time off is a lot easier said than done for employers; your business is one of the most important things to you, so there is always a constant need to ensure that everything is as it should be.
But don’t let this deprive you of a well-earned holiday from it all; not only does everyone deserve some time to focus on other things such as enjoying spending time with families and those you love, but switching off can also be vital to maintaining positive wellbeing, which is essential if you are going to remain top-of-your-game.
Not taking enough time away from work can have negative impacts on the mental health of employers; working non-stop can cause you to ‘burnout’. This means increased stress and anxiety, which will result in a drop in performance, productivity and ability to conduct your usual activities.
To help you try and avoid that this season, we have put together some tips to help you switch off:
Set your hours and stick to them (as much as possible)
You will have presumably already decided on your office opening hours, so make sure that you have publicised this on every platform possible – social media, emails, website etc. This way you are making it clear to your clients when you are contactable, as well as preparing yourself for not being in work mode during those days.
List out your business priorities and decide what can wait until January – by doing this you won’t have the last-minute panic and worries that you have forgotten something that needs to be dealt with right away.
Be strict with yourself
During your official time off, you should only be replying to urgent business matters, but when you are in the habit of checking your emails, it is easy to slip into replying to others as well. The only way to avoid this is by being strict with yourself – remind yourself that you are not officially working and that the work will still be there in January.
With modern day devices allowing us to be contactable 24/7 it is difficult to step away and far easier to be distracted by the many alerts chiming throughout the day. Try to set technology time frames; specific hours where you allow yourself to check your business technology. By restricting yourself to these hours; and sticking to them, it could help stop the urge for constant checking throughout the day and missing any of those special Christmassy moments.
Respect your employees right to a break
Although you might struggle to switch off yourself, your employees deserve to enjoy their Christmas break as well, so try to avoid contacting them, even via email, unless urgent. If you are working and need to email them about something, why not schedule your email to be sent on the first day back? Yes, this may mean that they get a swarm of emails hitting their inbox on their first day back, but that is better than disrupting their time off.
Embrace the Christmas spirit and enjoy yourself!
Remember, whether you give yourself a little or a lot of time off, enjoy it. You’ve put a lot of effort into supporting your customers, suppliers and employees, so it’s time to turn the focus to yourself. The daily grind will start up again soon enough, so enjoy your hard-earned time off.