As leaders, we struggle with resting and recharging. So, here’s a simple list of easy strategies on how to use your time off to the maximum and return
in the New Year feeling recharged and excited.
Limit screen time to invest it with others
There’s lots of engaging media to watch, but remember this can also disrupt our sleep patterns. Ensure you are putting down your electronics and enjoy
a great book instead of opening Netflix and watching hours of TV before bed.
If you’re going to enjoy a movie over the break, make an event of it and go out to dinner with some special people, then to the theater, or have a
family movie night in with popcorn and hot chocolate. Making fun memories and redeeming the time off to connect and enjoy the gift of friendship
is so refreshing.
Don’t skip out on the endorphins
Speaking of getting out of the house…there are ways of keeping yourself from going off track and depleting your energy levels during the most important
time of rest of the year. And this includes exercise.
Take your family to the local ice-skating rink, try a new class at the gym, hit up CrossFit, or get outside for a hike or a skiing session. You will
feel a million times better, and even be able to enjoy some of the holiday sweets without worrying about weight gain. Exercise also helps us to
sleep more soundly during our off time and gives us more energy throughout the day. It’s a mistake to skip it, even when we feel like it. While
break is about enjoying time off, it doesn’t mean dropping activities that are beneficial to our overall health.
Engage in some positive reflection
Business culture can be so forward-thinking, from tracking growth curves to projecting revenue, that we forget to look back. Take some time alone (mornings
are usually best) to find a quiet spot in your house or at your favorite coffee shop and bring a journal and pen. Laptops have a way of distracting
us with other pressing demands, like emails or text messages.
Set aside this time to think holistically about how the year went. This isn’t a performance review session, but a time to remember the good things
in your year. What went well this year? What made you thankful? What new relationships surprised you? What were the challenges that made you stronger?
Gratitude is remembering with a purpose. Remember the good things that happened this year, and all that is to come in the new year.
Enjoy giving to others
While Christmas has turned into a consumer holiday, there’s still a tradition that hasn’t changed its meaning or value, and that is giving to others
in need. When we give of our time and resources, we immediately make a connection to others that inspires hope and meets a need.
Find a cause or group that is collecting or distributing donations and pitch in. There are plenty of opportunities to give and volunteer slots to take
that ensure those who are without a home or food for the holiday have a good Christmas.
Even consider starting a new family tradition by picking your favorite charity, or partnering with a local church or nonprofit to serve those in need
around Christmas. Bless a local family with a stash of presents for the tree. Prepare or serve a hot meal. Participate in a sock or coat drive.
What we receive from others is special, and what we give can be life changing.
As we enter the month of December, take adequate time to rest and relax from the daily demands of work, but also prepare purposeful time to celebrate
the good and give back to others. It will make this special time of year both meaningful and refreshing.