Overcoming the Year-End Blues

Year-end got you down? Learn four ways to overcome the year-end blues.

I’ll be the first to admit that as the year winds down, so does my body. It would be great if I could kick back and relax but I know if I do, it will be that much harder to start the engines again in January. Here are some tips on how to coast through the holidays and begin your New Year off right.


Just say no: Resist the temptation to accept every invitation that comes through the door. Yes, I know it will be an entire year before you get to drink real eggnog again, but is that really a good reason to attend a function? Decide what you can and cannot do and then politely decline those offers that aren’t in this year’s plan.

Acknowledge your accomplishments: Why do so many people look at the glass as being half empty? I’ve been guilty of doing the same as I make my list of everything that I didn’t do this year. Recently I started looking at things differently. For the past few years, I have been putting together a year-end newsletter for friends, colleagues, and clients where I share news about programs that I think will be of interest to recipients. I include generous offers to those in my community as my way of saying thanks. The process of writing that letter really puts things in perspective. Sometimes even I can’t believe how much I’ve actually achieved within a year’s time. Try doing the same. Make a list of all your accomplishments and then raise your full glass and toast yourself for a job well done.

Plan now for the New Year: Begin making plans for next year so you are ready to go the moment the clock strikes twelve and the ball drops in Times Square. I know too many people who lose an entire month planning their year in January. Now is the time to go through your list and block out the time necessary to move things forward. Note to self: Anything that’s been on the list for more than a year can be tossed. If they were that important, you would have made time to do them.

Schedule some downtime: I know I just said to use this time to plan, but everyone needs a break every now and again. Visit that exhibit you’ve been talking about, before it leaves your area. Or reconnect with an old friend who you’ve been meaning to see.

The year is almost gone and before you know it will be time to begin anew. Here’s to a stress free holiday and to a great New Year!

Roberta Chinsky Matuson is the President of Human Resource Solutions and author of the forthcoming book, Suddenly in Charge! Managing Up, Managing Down, Succeeding All Around (Nicholas Brealey, January 2011). Visit Roberta’s Blog on the Generations at Work or her Linked-in Group Suddenly in Charge! Sign up to receive a complimentary subscription to Roberta’s monthly newsletter, HR Matters


About the author

For more than 25 years, Roberta Chinsky Matuson, president of Matuson Consulting, has helped leaders in Fortune 500 companies, including Best Buy, New Balance, The Boston Beer Company and small to medium-size businesses, achieve dramatic growth and market leadership through the maximization of talent. She is known world-wide as “The Talent Maximizer®.” Roberta, a leading authority on leadership and the skills and strategies required to earn employee commitment and client loyalty, is the author of the top-selling book, Suddenly In Charge: Managing Up, Managing Down, Succeeding All Around (Nicholas Brealey, 2011), a Washington Post Top 5 Business Book For Leaders.