Maintaining Energy & Focus in the Final Months of the Year

As the year’s final months approach, it can be challenging for leaders to keep energy levels up, both for themselves and their teams. With holidays, year-end deadlines, Christmas parties and general fatigue, it’s easy for productivity to dwindle. However, by taking a holistic approach that focuses on your team’s energy, you can keep yourself and your team on track and finish the year strong. It allows you and your team to have the energy to enjoy the holidays, connect with loved ones and switch off from work.

Cultivating Physical Energy

1. Prioritise Sleep: Quality sleep is the foundation of physical energy. Encourage your team to establish a consistent sleep schedule, aim for 7-9 hours of sleep, and talk to them about having good sleep hygiene 30 to 40 minutes before going to bed; this might include:

– Dimming the lights
– Shutting down their devices
– Taking a warm bath
– Journaling
– Reading a book
– Some light stretching

2. Nutrition: Eating a well-balanced diet is essential. Encourage your team to consume plenty of fruits, vegetables, lean proteins, and whole grains. Avoid excessive caffeine and sugar, which can lead to energy crashes. Provide healthy food options at work, fruit, healthy snacks and an assortment of herbal teas.

3. Hydration: Dehydration can lead to fatigue and decreased cognitive function. Encourage your team to drink an adequate amount of water throughout the day.

4. Exercise Regularly: Physical activity improves physical energy and enhances mental clarity. Promote regular exercise to boost overall vitality, even just a short walk during breaks. Encourage your team to get outside and take a short walk to re-energise themselves.

Maintaining Mental Energy

1. Slow down & check-in: Talk with your team about creating space in their day to slow down and check in on how they’re feeling and where their energy levels are in that moment. Becoming aware of yourself and making the necessary adjustments can help reduce stress, improve focus, and boost mental energy.

2. Journaling: People can start feeling overwhelmed near the end of the year, which can create stress and impact sleep and general wellbeing. Journaling before going to bed helps to a) build awareness of your thoughts and tasks for the next day and b) allow you to get everything out of your mind, which helps to foster a sense of calm and support better sleep.

3. Seek support: Encourage your team to come and chat with you or someone they feel comfortable talking with if they think things are becoming too intense and they sense that overwhelm is setting in. Also, if your company or organisation has access to an external employee support service, let your team know it is available and an excellent service to connect with.

Maintaining Neural Energy

1. Task Prioritisation: Assist your team in setting clear goals and priorities for the year’s final months. This can help prevent overwhelm and maintain motivation. One thing that happens as we near the end of the year is, suddenly, everyone wants projects finished and tasks completed, and it all becomes a bit of a scramble to complete everything. Ensure you and your team are 100% clear on what needs to be completed before Christmas and what can wait until the New Year.

2. Breaks and Time Management: Encourage regular breaks to prevent burnout. Good time management will help the team maintain concentration and energy levels.

3. Minimise Distractions: Create a distraction-free work environment. This includes turning off non-essential notifications and establishing a designated focused workspace.

4. Team Cohesion: Focus on team cohesion and creating an environment where your team can engage in fun activities. A close-knit team is more likely to maintain energy and motivation and finish the year strong together.

5. Flexibility: Be flexible with schedules and consider offering remote work options if possible, especially as schools start finishing for the year. This flexibility helps to maintain energy levels.

By optimising your team’s energy levels, you can cultivate an environment where your team remains energised and focused during the year’s final months. Remember that the key to success is creating a culture and an environment that supports your team’s energy levels. With the right strategies and support, your team can navigate the challenges of the year’s end, finish on a high note, enjoy their holidays and return to work refreshed.