How to Keep the Workplace Merry and Bright this Holiday Season

Every year, you begin the holiday season believing that it truly is “the most wonderful time of the year.” It doesn’t take long, however, to realize that sometimes work is anything but wonderful thanks to an office full of co-workers and a job to do.

Fortunately, there are ways to make the season bright while still getting your job done. What follows are some tried and true tips to help you do just that:

  1. Don’t go crazy when it comes to decorating. Whether you are chasing sales leads, seeing patients, answering phones, or updating mailing lists, it is important that your surroundings reflect your professionalism. Sure, a few decorations are fine, but leave the blinking lights, scented candles, and musical figurines at home.
  2. Try not to overindulge in office goodies. Putting on a few pounds over the holidays is normal but if you overindulge all day, every day you are going to end up feeling sluggish and unable to concentrate. Bring some healthy snacks and keep them at your desk if necessary to keep yourself from being tempted.
  3. It may be better to give than to receive but don’t go overboard. Giving gifts to all or even a few of your co-workers or boss can get tricky. Most people are stretched thin this time of year and if you are giving out gifts, they may feel like they must reciprocate. If you do feel the need to hand out gifts, be sure to keep them very inexpensive. Expensive gifts are rarely – if ever – appropriate in the workplace.
  4. Get some fresh air. Although the weather outside may be frightful, if at all possible try to get outdoors during the workday and take a short, brisk walk. This will do wonders for your energy level and help to reduce stress.
  5. Remember the Golden Rule. Take your cue from your co-workers. If a fellow employee doesn’t share your exuberance for the holidays, don’t try to force him or her into the holiday spirit. There is nothing worse than an overbearing co-worker. Likewise, try to be patient if you are the one who thinks holiday cheer has no place in the office. Don’t be Scrooge, and as much as possible, try to go with the flow this time of year. After all, it won’t last forever.