Have you ever come out of the holidays feeling like you let everyone down, including yourself? That’s no way to start the new year. Read on for tips to help you thrive – personally and professionally – this holiday season. Get ready to turn last year’s exhaustion into this year’s exhilaration.

1| Don’t overcommit.

It’s easy to take on too many projects at work, which leads to unwelcome stress. Keep in mind that December has fewer business days because of company holidays. Also, you’ll have to work around colleagues taking extra vacation. Be realistic about the amount of collaboration you’ll need from your coworkers. Take the “less is more” approach about what projects you can actually accomplish this month.

Outside the office, don’t feel pressured to commit to every holiday party, scarf swap or tree trimming invitation that comes your way. Being selective before you RSVP “Yes” will help you preserve your sanity.

2| Focus on experiences instead of things.

Many Americans are overflowing with stuff. Use the holidays as an opportunity to give the gift of memorable and delightful experiences to your friends and family. Maybe it’s as simple as a dinner out together. Or go extravagant with a family trip with memories to last a lifetime.

3| Set expectations appropriately.

“Good enough” never felt so great! Make this your mantra during this busy season and spread the word to family, friends and colleagues. Between Instagram and Pinterest photos and flawless magazine spreads, it’s easy to obsess over perfection. Home décor, gift wrap, cookie decorating – there’s no shortage of areas vying for attention. Strike a balance between making things special for the season but not full-blown insanity. You’ll enjoy less stress, get more sleep and keep more cash in your wallet. Besides, most people will still be impressed with your decorating skills and thankful for any sweet treats you send their way!

4| Cultivate gratitude.

What are you truly thankful for? Take a few minutes to jot down your list. Keep it somewhere you can easily see. Whether it’s a Post-It note at your desk or the lock screen on your phone, let your list keep you motivated and serene throughout the hectic holiday season.

Also, consider doing something to help others. For example, donate clothing and canned goods to your local homeless shelter or deliver meals to elderly neighbors. There are so many ways to give back to your community! Get your family and friends involved to make a difference in people’s lives. You’ll be glad you did.

5| Prepare for the new year.

Finally, get ready for next year. Jumpstart the new year by casting a strong vision and setting clear goals – at home and at work. What new things would you like to learn? What new adventure might your family embark upon?

On a smaller scale, tackle your mess of a desk before you take that time off. Organize your workspace and thoroughly clean your desk, keyboard, mouse and office phone. A decluttered space will help you kick off the New Year with a fresh, productive start.

Happy holidays!

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Meg G. Anderson

Founder & Editorial Consultant, Luminary Works

Since the early 2000s, Meg has been passionate about helping brands spread their mission and market their expertise through a variety of career hats, including copywriting, web design, project management, and internal communications. She founded Luminary Works in 2016 to help small, medium, and family businesses create stories worth telling and messages worth sharing. She lives in Atlanta, Georgia, with her husband and their dog, Howard.

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