HEROware’s Best Practices Series
It’s a jungle out there in the reseller world, and the HEROware community is here to help. We invite our resellers to share their expertise, tips of the trade, and lessons learned about reselling so we can pass these words of wisdom on to other resellers. To be considered for an interview on the topics of sales, customer service, operating a small business, work/life balance or any other topic of interest to other resellers, please email us at email@example.com.
Holiday Stress Tips from HEROware
The holidays are here and, for many people, they bring with them additional financial, social and travel obligations that can really take a toll on an already busy schedule. For small business owners, the holidays also often bring about either a massive increase or decrease in business, either of which carries its own stressors. People are depending on you to keep your cool into the new year. Fortunately, we’ve put together some tips we collected from HEROware employees and resellers (many of whom have learned from experience) to help you along the way.
Tip #1: Prioritize
Even though there may be more demands on your time and wallet right now, you still have a finite number of hours in the day (and, we’re guessing, a finite amount of money in the bank). Admit to yourself that you can’t do everything you need/want to do, and start from there. Then, in each aspect of your life, pick one or two things that are most important, and focus on those.
In your work, you may decide that building your reputation for having excellent customer service is more important right now than expanding your customer base. In your personal life you may realize that traveling out of state to spend the holidays with an elderly relative outweighs your desire to throw your annual New Year’s Eve bash. Decide if decorating your house in the fashion of Chevy Chase in National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation is worth the effort, or if you can live with just a tree and a few outside lights. Take some pressure off yourself by picking your “must do” events and activities, and make everything else a “will do if I have time.”
This brings us to…
Tip #2: Say “No”
Once you have picked your areas of focus this holiday season, start saying “no” to everything else. If you have decided, as in tip #1, to focus on customer service in your business, then say “no” to taking on new clients during this time. Skip a couple of parties. Buy fewer gifts. Decide not to travel. Spend Christmas Eve alone if you want to. If it’s not a priority, and you don’t think you can do it without adding stress to your life, then say “no” to it.
Don’t be scared to turn people down; you’ll still have friends come January.
Tip #3: Take Care of Yourself
If you took “exercise” off your priority list, revisit tip #1 and add it to your priority list. Then add “eating right” to your list as well. During times of high stress it’s more important than ever to take care of yourself. Even if you think you don’t have time to exercise, a good workout or even just a walk around the block actually reduces stress, clears your head, and energizes you, making you more prepared to handle holiday stress.
While many people find themselves drinking more around the holidays because of the increase of social functions, try to avoid the urge to turn to booze, cigarettes, pound cake, or any other unhealthy vice to relieve negative feelings. Poor health decisions impact you long after the holiday stress is gone.
Tip #4: Disconnect
So much of modern-day stress comes from constant connection to all our stressors – either through cell phones, iPads, laptops, television, radio, advertisements, or any other device that connects us with every overwhelming thing happening in the world. Brandon Phipps, owner of Second Star Technologies, offers this simple tip for giving yourself a breather: “Intentionally drive some place where your cell phone has no reception. Stay as long as you can until you start to twitch uncontrollably.”
Taking a nature break, even if it’s a simple walk on the beach or at a park, can do wonders for reconnecting you to what’s really important. Getting into nature, sans phone, has been proven to do wonders for one’s sense of well-being and relaxation.
Tip #5: Do Something Simply for the Fun of It
Allow yourself to just have fun. It also helps if you can surround yourself with happy, positive people in the process. If you don’t have a hobby, consider getting one. It’s a great outlet for stress relief all year long. George Cabanting, owner of Oxford Computer Services in Maui, sometimes relieves stress by spending his evenings playing guitar with a local ukulele group. The group enjoys dinner together, sings, plays songs, and even dances the Hula. George finds his balance, and remembers what he works so hard for.