The typical work duration is at 40 hours a week (8 hours a day), but recent data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics show that the average American worker spends around 44 hours every week (8.8 hours every day) working. While a national Gallup poll showed a higher number; with Full-time US workers reporting that they work at least 47 hours a week (9.4 hours a day) on average.
If we consider this to be the new “average”, a busy work season (due to deadline, project demands, or seasonal trends) could compel employees to work at least 12 hours a day probably even for more than 5 days a week) which means that employees would have to make necessary preparations in order to achieve proper work-home balance. Whether it’s a week or a month, we’ll be taking a look at tips to help you get ready for a busy season at work.
No matter how much coffee you’ve got in stock, if you’re not mentally and emotionally prepared for the long hours ahead, you’d just end up getting blindsided. You’ll need to list down everything you need to do for the busy week or month ahead, and also mentally prepare that there might be new things you’d have to add in your to-do list along the way. This may also mean that you might have to sacrifice certain aspects of your personal life for a while — less time with your friends, family, or pets, and maybe having to skip a day or two at the gym if necessary. Accept that you’d have to work long hours in the following days/weeks so you can plan accordingly.
Make a Plan and Schedule
Get your calendar or planner and plot out everything that you have in store. Although your calendar should be flexible enough to accommodate any additional tasks and deadlines that may arise along the way, it’s important that you also have your priorities listed so that you’ll know which one you’ll have to finish first and which tasks can be assigned to be finished on later days. Additionally, this plan and schedule of yours shouldn’t just be limited to work, but also any tasks at home and personal commitments.
Delegate What You Can
Remember, it’s not only your hours that’s limited but also your energy and motivation. That said, it’s best to delegate as many tasks as you can. If you think you won’t have enough time to go out and buy groceries and prepare your work lunch (and maybe even dinner), then try signing up for a meal delivery service. If you no longer have time to do the laundry, find laundry pickup and delivery services in your area to do it for you. If you won’t be able to walk or even feed your dog, get a pet sitter, or have them stay at a boarding kennel. You can even ask a close friend or family member, or hire someone to do household chores for the meantime. The bottom line is that if you have too much on your plate, there’s always the option to have someone else do it for you.
Tell Your Friends and Family
People might start worrying or ask where you are or where you’ve been, or even get mad that you no longer hang out. Busy work seasons can strain your relationships if you’re not careful. So you must notify everyone who needs to know that you’ll be busy for the next couple of days/weeks.
Lastly, make sure that you regularly reward yourself once in a while, treat yourself to a good meal or a spa day. This should also be planned. If you have a busy work week, you could do this at the end of the hectic week, but if you see your busy work season to stretch out in weeks or even months, make sure that you schedule a break and a treat every once in a while to help you de-stress and recharge.
Proper preparation for a busy work season can go a long way in helping you juggle everything that’s going on in your life — from work, personal commitments, home chores, and so on. So, if you’re expecting a busy work season, don’t delay and plan, you’ll thank yourself later on for doing so.