When it comes to preparing for the holidays I’m a firm believer that it’s never too early to start. Usually I start in August. This year though, I’ve been feeling more disorganized than usual. I’ve realized that when I was working at Fox News I had settled into a pretty good routine. Now that I’m out on my own I’ve been struggling to find that balance again. When you work a job with a set finish time it’s much easier to check out mentally and compartmentalize your tasks. As I get my footing as an entrepreneur it’s not as easy because I find myself doing everything all the time!
Luckily for me there’s still time to get organized – all I need is a list. If you’re in the same boat as me it’s fine, but we need to get started. Here’s a list of all the things to consider before the end of the year:
Presents Lists – This is the most obvious list to start with and maybe the one that requires the most thought. This year I’m taking a more essentialist approach to gifts. Instead of going overboard I’m thinking about what the people I care about could really use this year. In the new Bad Mom’s Christmas movie Mila Kunis’s character jokes how she’s bought so many unnecessary presents this year, going so far as to buy her barista a scented candle. We laugh – but who hasn’t gone overboard on gift shopping at least once? Look over your list and have a good think about who really belongs there! I like to keep ideas in my Evernote notebook throughout the year for times just like this when I can’t think of what to get. In that folder I keep ideas that I’ve found and notes on what people have told me through the year that they would like or need.
Sending Cards – The US postal deadlines are upon us! If you’re only sending within the USA you still have plenty of time, but international deadlines are much earlier than you think! The deadline for priority shipping to Africa is the last day in November! You can’t even procrastinate until December these days. Check out the US postal service website for the other deadlines. Also pull together a list of who you’d like to send cards to this year. I have a document that I update every year with everyone’s addresses. Then I can refer back to it each year and know exactly who I need to send cards to this year.
Sort Your Calendar – I pride myself on the fact that I don’t say yes to every social or networking event going. I’m a believer in quality over quantity. But over the holiday period this becomes tough even for me. It seems like everyone and anyone is inviting you to some holiday mixer! Take the time to pencil in the people you really want to see first. Then you can be more decisive when other invites come in. If you really want to be there – do it. If you don’t, then kindly pass. . Just be real with yourself, if you’re only going to the company party for the free food that’s fine – make sure you get your fill!
Make time for your normal life – When bombarded by the holidays we can often drop the ball on some of the more everyday parts of life. Take time to keep up with your usual activities – whether you normally go for a run in the morning or have a movie night on Thursdays. Doing this can stop you from feeling swept away this holiday season.