8 Ways to Beat the January Blues
1.Organise your workspace
You may think that Feng Shui and creating karma through organisation is a load of you know what! However, there is definite evidence that an organised workspace will raise your mood and encourage you to work more effectively. Put aside half an hour this week to organise your workspace and then ensure at the end of every working day you spend 2 minutes setting it back to this level of organisation.
2.Continue positive themes from December
December can be a very positive month with the joy of Christmas and the thought of the new start the New Year brings. Focus on positive areas of the business and keep employees continually aware of them. Display pictures around the workplace of the Christmas party or festivities within the organisation. Remind employees of the fun times had in December.
3.Start up internal events
Christmas doesnt have to be the only fun time of year in the workplace. Set up internal events within the organisation. These could be charity based, such as cake sales or fancy dress days. Alternatively, you could set up internal exercise classes, such as dance or aerobics. Being more sociable has been shown to decrease depression levels, therefore creating a sociable working environment will go some why to help combat those January blues.
4.Involve employees in the business plan for 2010
To ensure your employees dont feel the January blues, involve them at every opportunity you can. Set aside time to come up with a team business plan for the year. Give each team member a focus and time for them to achieve their own areas. Team members can also be encouraged to partake in the overall organisational business plan. Ensure all team members are aware of the plan and their position in achieving it. Again, having a focus will ensure the January blues are the last thing on anybodys mind.
5.Prepare for the most common day off of the year
The third Monday in January (18th) is the most popular sick day of the year, mainly due to the January blues. Make this day different by possibly using the above idea of charity fancy dress or other fun ideas. Communicate this early to all employees so they have it to look forward to.
6.Lower your expectations
Many people expect a lot from the New Year. They believe the New Year will bring with it new beginnings, such as the end of the recession, a more stable working environment, or even the underperformer within the organisation to suddenly step up to the mark. Expectations are often so high that, when these aspirations are not met, moods can very quickly be lowered. Do not go into the New Year with high expectations, unless you are committed to ensuring change does actually occur. Change lies with you, not with the New Year.
7.Dont punish yourself
High expectations not being met can often lead to us wanting to punish ourselves for our downfalls, both on a personal and professional level. Again, be realistic with what you can achieve. Set yourself challenges but not impossibilities. If you do not manage to reach your expectations, evaluate why this is the case and how you and your team can improve next time. Focus on the positives and reward yourself for the areas you did improve in, rather than punishing yourself for those you didnt.
8.Set personal objectives
Having a focus and something to aim for in January can be one sure fire way to push away the January blues. These could be small objectives, such as spending time chatting to each member of your team everyday, or larger objectives such as a further skill or qualification. Having a focus in January will see the month fly by!
Have a very Happy New Year!!
Sam Flynn MSc.