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Top Ten Ways to avoid Work Stress over the Christmas holidays

This is a blog for those of you who would class yourselves as a ‘workaholic’ and you want to know ways to have a better work-life balance.

Perhaps you recognise you work too much and you want this Christmas time to spend away from work, or with family. It may be that you need to work over the holidays and you want tips on how to have a little more work-life balance at Christmas.

And it is well you might want to consider how to most effectively manage your stress this Christmas. The Stress Management Society quoted in The Telegraph say that 5% of the population feels that Christmas is more stressful than a burglary! And what is more; up to 50% of British people will use alcohol to try and self-medicate in order to cope with the pressures of Christmas. You can read more about this here.

And imagine on top of all this, having to juggle meeting work demands and deadlines too! Well, you need strategies… so here goes:

  1. First of all, consider what you would like your Christmas break to be like? What would you like to achieve during the holiday. Is it to rest? Catch up on work? Spend time with family? Be clear about this as this will govern how you will approach your holiday.


  1. Secondly; Plan. Identify all the tasks you have to do over the holidays, and how much time you require to achieve them. Be specific so if you have several reports to write and emails to send, list these and allocate a realistic time frame to complete them.


  1. Also identify the key dates over the holidays when you will have family or social commitments. You may not be able to honour each and everyone, however, note ALL the important dates that you want to be part of.


  1. On a calendar, mark off your holiday time and days and times when you will be focussing on resting, spending time with friends and family and enjoying yourself.


  1. Protect specific family dates on the calendar – so you can work around them. Be clear about the days when you are working and the days when you are not.


  1. Stick to this plan – be weary of the temptation to disregard this plan! Be disciplined. Your reward will be being able to enjoy all your social commitments – guilt free!


  1. Start with the work that is the most important. Break it down into smaller achievable tasks. This is a helpful thing to do as it makes the task much more achievable.


  1. Apply the 25 – 10 rule (also known as Pomodoro’s technique). This means you spend 25 minutes on the task and then take a 10 minute break. You repeat this cycle for each task until you have completed all the tasks for that piece of work.


  1. Choose carefully the environment in which you carry out the work – the environment can have a positive or negative impact on our creativity and productivity.


  1. On your list of work to be done, tick off each one as it is completed. You will feel increasingly unburdened and feel lighter of spirit. You will automatically start enjoying your holiday even more.


Bonus Tip!

Most of all, enjoy your holiday! Work effectively and you’ll be able to work, rest and play! (Who says we can’t have it all)

For client-centred 1 to 1, and team support feel free to contact Awele for an initial consultation.

Awele is an experienced trainer who has worked nationally and delivered training for over 300 delegates – working successfully with over 30 companies and organisations. From goal setting, and planning skills to resilience and stress management, Awele has experience designing and delivering a range of programmes. If you have particular training needs, then do enquire to see how Awele can be of support to you. Workplace stress is not something you have to live with, contact Awele and make stress at work a thing of the past.

Call Awele on 07985 440014 or 0845 054 2781 or

See here for more information on the range of training services Awele provides.

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