While most of our employees are gearing up for Christmas, many business owners are staggering through to Christmas.
The demands are on both sides: from increasingly stressed customers to staff more interested in the Christmas party than the work – not to mention increased family demands as thoughts turn to the excitements of the arrival of obligatory family hoards.
Not for us business owners a quick nip to the doctors for a sick note for stress. While the numbers of your staff getting massive HR and medical support for stress-related illnesses, doctors can do little to help ailing business owners.
It is pretty tough for any illness. I asked a doctors surgery for a sick note on one occasion post op, just to keep things nice and legal being technically an employee of the company and was told: “Sorry, you own a business don’t you? I don’t think we give sick notes out for people like you.”
This year has been incredibly tough for many of us owners. I hear of many people just clinging onto their businesses in the hope of being post-recession enough by next year to get shot of what has become not their beloved baby but some nightmare resembling the landscape of Munch’s The Scream.
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To survive at all we have to take deliberate steps to cope with the stresses and at no time will this be more important than over Christmas.
Some tips to achieving this as follows:
1. Set yourself smart goals of what is feasible to achieve this side of the festive shut down, get there and call it a day. Unfinished business will nag away at you over the turkey
2. Before you leave, share some positives with your staff and colleagues so the good feelings persist in all your minds subconciously at least during the shut down
3. Make a concious commitment to your friends, family and most of all yourself that for once the whole damn caboodle can go up in smoke during your break and you will simply not just worry, but literally not give it a thought
4. And don’t even think about checking those emails on Christmas day – I have a standing joke with my accountant that one of us will each year. This year I will definitely win
5. Tidy up before you go – there is nothing more grim than coming back to work in a freezing january to a desk covered in bedraggled cards and the remnants of a party popper
6. Make some business new year resolutions to delegate more, stop setting yourself and others perfectionate goals, try to get over the entrepreneurs’ usual lack of clear communication skills and plan to excercise more
Overall, remember your friends and family matter and even to possibly consider if your business is actually delivering the things you originally aimed for when you started it. If it doesn’t, well it is hardly surprising you find yourself stressed. So if not, 2015 might just be an exciting year to change course.
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