5 Ways Managers Can Reduce Holiday Stress

Holidays are a time of celebrating with your family and friends, but most of us spend more time with those we work with than with our own families. Our coworkers, too, therefore become like family. Therefore, caring and supporting the wellness of employees during the holidays is definitely warranted to create a positive working culture, since it is our work is like our second home.

With the holiday season comes the good ol’ fashion holiday stress. Performance reviews, end-of-the year reporting, perfect holiday outfits for the holiday parties, and for some, office gift swaps.

For those who work in leadership positions and manage a team, I want to make 5 suggestions for ways you can help reduce holiday stress for your teams: 

CREATE GRATITUDE OPPORTUNITIES | Creating a culture of gratitude can go a long way in retaining team members. Therefore, look for opportunities to express gratitude. We all know people who go out of their way at work and especially for their families around this time of the year, and a simple thank you card can be an affirming gesture. Pay attention to those who don’t have family or have plans for the holidays, as they may need that extra positive attention. A simple thank you can do just the trick because you are affirming that one matters and that they are seen.

WELLNESS BREAKS | Pick a time of the work day throughout the month of December and designate this time as a wellness break. During this time, you can play calming spa music, encourage your team to do short meditations, and occasionally have a healthy lunch catered or sponsored. The goal is to get everyone to pause from work and to check in with themselves and be present with the moment of being alive.

INQUIRE | During the holidays, it is inevitable that we become 10 times busier. There’s no better way to help reduce another’s  stress levels is by checking in with them. Ask questions like “how are you feeling? Do you need any support with any projects or deadlines? Did you eat lunch yet?” Checking in with people shows that you are paying them attention. People like to feel seen, heard, and connected, so don’t underestimate checking in on how one is doing and feeling.

SUPPLY HEALTHY SNACKS | We all know it is almost inevitable that we will be going for the carbs and high-sugar foods due to all the holiday treats. But in order to lead your team into high-energy, sharp focus, and positivity, clean food is a must. So instead of eggnog, punch, and cookies in the office for the holidays, offer infused water, sliced apples, fruit trays, or tea. The point is to provide healthier options that are still tasty and generally consumed.

MAKE POSSIBLE DEADLINE CHANGES | This may take grace and strategy because not all deadlines are equal. Some deadlines are a must and have to be met. However, depending on the priority of the project, you can adjust deadline dates for the sake of the team members’ wellness. Again, this has everything to do with being present and discerning of your team members. The last thing you want is a team member who is stressed out, burnt out, and unhappy because their work performance declines tremendously. Therefore,  it is up to your discretion as the leader to see where adjustments need to be made, but never compromise the wellness of the employee.

Wishing you all Holiday Wellness! 

Toni Jones

Wellness Strategist | Thought Educator

Toni Jones is a wellness strategist, a speaker, womanist and thought educator dedicated to empowering women to educate, embrace and heal their total womanhood. After a traumatic divorce, 14 years of experience in the fashion industry as a personal stylist and image consultant, Toni experienced a career and personal identity crisis, which led her into a self-discovery process to find her purposeful path. She completed school and graduated Summa Cum Laude with a degree in Psychology, where she fell in love with the study of the mind. Through her process of self-discovery, she transitioned from being an expert in external self-maintenance to a specialist in internal self-maintenance, to being a “wife” in a marriage to a “wife” in her womanhood. Toni made it her mission to educate women on how they too can discover, heal and expand their womanhood in wellness. In 2014, she launched her blog WIFE Comma, WIFE, an acronym standing for womanhood in full empowerment. Through her blogging, she gained attention and opportunities to service women. Toni serviced empowerment programs like Girls Who Code and AKA INC. Pearls. Giving keynotes and programming for The Powerful Women's organization, Women of Color Task Force held at University of Michigan and for a range of other women audiences. In 2015, she expanded her blog to a wellness brand where she provides programming and services that promote spiritual literacy, ancient understandings of womanhood, radical self love practices, mindset and lifestyle wellness. Toni's signature program "Dimensional Womanhood" supports and educates women of their whole self as being a healthy spirit first, a human second, and a female third. Toni believes the new era of women leadership is being ushered in through women's wellness. When she isn't working, you can find her at one of her favorite places to be...Trader Joes grocery store, walking in 5 inch heels.

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