There is currently a running joke among my finance blogger colleagues about how busy we’ve been for the last few weeks. Most years, December is slow, but last year December earned its place on our list of busy seasons. Additionally, we already know January is going to be crazy due to new marketing budgets and campaigns. Then, of course, we go straight into tax season.
In other words, we’re not getting a breather this year. We’ve got back-to-back busy seasons going on and it’s our jobs to stay sane. Here are three ways to handle back-to-back busy seasons.
Spot any limiting beliefs about what you can accomplish.
In 2017, I noticed that I have a tendency of vastly underestimating what I can accomplish. I have a limiting belief that I only have a set amount of time to do all the things I find important – work, family, time with friends and time with a partner.
In December, I blew that limiting belief out of the water. I met all my deadlines, went on dates and hit up every holiday party on my agenda.
Was I tired? Yes. But not as much as I expected to be. I still slept, I still did everything I wanted to do and I still made money. In the past, I would have assumed my business would take over.
With back-to-back busy seasons, it’s important that we realize we can handle quite a bit. Remember, we have the same 24 hours in a day as Beyonce. In fact, sometimes we sabotage ourselves by assuming we can’t handle busy seasons.
Have clear communication.
Because busy seasons of work can be incredibly intrusive, it’s important that we let people know what’s going on. This includes clients, family, friends, and partners. Otherwise, they are just going to assume we don’t care.
For example, I can let my family know that things are crazy right now so I may not be with them as often as I’d like. Or, that I’m going to have to find a way to compromise – like stay with them for a weekend but that I’ll have to work for a few hours while I’m there. Most people are very understanding of this so long as you clearly communicate what is going on.
Plan around busy seasons.
If you’ve been in business for at least a year, you have some data to work with in terms of when busy seasons actually occur. You also have data about slow seasons. This can help you plan out your year accordingly. For example, I know August is slow, so that’s my time to relax. I also know the first quarter of every year is very busy so I mentally prepare for it.
Of course, sometimes busy seasons catch you by surprise – like this last December did. In that case, just enjoy the ride because your bank account will thank you.
Back-to-back busy seasons don’t need to cause a lot of overwhelming feelings and stress. If you know how to handle them – and plan for busy season accordingly – they can be quite lucrative. You’ll also be ready to rest when you can.
Amanda is a best-selling author of "Make Money Your Honey", a book that helps freelancers and business owners understand their relationship with money and how to make it more productive. She's driven by helping others live the most productive and fruitful way possible.