What Do You Want for Christmas Next Year? Start Thinking About It Now!


What Do You Want for Christmas Next Year? Start Thinking About It Now!

Today I decided I’d work from home. Hot coffee in hand I climbed the steps to my office and got settled at my desk.

The sun was streaming through my window, and on the other side, I could see the washing I’d hung out a few hours earlier. A long kimono I’d worn to the beach the day before, gently swaying in the breeze. Back and forward. Back and forward.

Then I was thinking about the beach again. The perfect conditions we’d had yesterday. And before I knew it my coffee was cold, and I’d lost a good twenty minutes! I realised at that moment I was settling into my Christmas fatigue. I felt completely and utterly drained.

I still haven’t been able to pinpoint exactly what it is about this time of year that induces fatigue. Maybe it’s the long hot days or the air-conditioned offices. Maybe it’s the month of party invitations, or just knowing that in a few short weeks you will be slowing down, shifting your focus from business to family, food and fun. But for me, that fatigue is almost unavoidable.

Learning from the past.

This time last year we didn’t know how we would survive Christmas. A series of events earlier in the year had led to the toughest times we’d ever had in our business careers and our marriage. We’d resolved to dig in and pull through it, and then the exhaustion hit.

Somehow we pulled it off, and not only did we make it but we managed an amazing Christmas for our kids and ourselves. But it’s not something I’m keen to repeat. And thinking back we realised the exhaustion was a pattern, we knew almost to the day when it would set in. So knowing we were likely to hit another energy zap this Christmas we started planning a gift for our future selves.

It’s all about strategy.

Up until last year, I wasn’t a very strategic business owner. Sure I had plans, but mostly I was just riding on my intuition. Letting my business bend in whichever direction the industry was taking me. I wasn’t driving.

The shift to strategic business owner happened when I realised that I wasn’t achieving any of my goals. Not one. I was successful, and we were making money, but nothing that I wanted to achieve in my life, or my career had happened.

We had a three-hour drive home last year from our Christmas Day celebrations, and we spent the whole lot of it strategising and goal setting for 2017. Then we spent the next few days refining that plan. Putting it into a timeline and adding a budget.

One of our main goals was to not be playing catch up at Christmas in 2017. Heading into the festive season with the intention of slowing down and giving our minds and bodies the rest it craved. So back to my kimono, my cold coffee and my lost twenty minutes.

Pushing back my chair I headed down to the kitchen. I reheated my coffee and transferred it to a travel cup before going straight to the beach. I’m not losing any time at work because I planned for it. I don’t have guilt or resentment, or stress … Well no additional holiday stress anyway, because I’m meeting all my goals.

So this year do yourself a favour. Think about what you want for Christmas next year, what you need for Christmas next year and start planning for that now!

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