It’s easy to get anxious this time of year. You have the normal stresses of your job and then the constant pull of the holiday demands. On top of all that, the country is mourning the unimaginable horror that occurred in Newtown, Conn.. Take a step back and have some compassion for what your employees may be feeling this year.
How do you show compassion at the office?
· Let them talk. Everyone has been impacted in some way by the tragedy at Sandy Hook. Create a safe environment where people can feel free to express themselves and share what they’re feeling.
· Give them time off. You can help reduce their overall stress level by giving them an afternoon off. Or let them have extra time at lunch. Being able to get some of their holidays tasks completed during the workday will reduce their overall stress levels.
· Keep your own problems to yourself. It’s likely you have year-end deadlines your team doesn’t even know about. If your exhibit a short fuse or keep telling everyone how stressed you are, you’re insuring their anxiety level will increase. So stay as positive and upbeat as possible.
· Do something fun. You don’t need to have a big, expensive party to let people blow off steam. Bring lunch in or sponsor a happy hour. Maybe have a bake off. Whatever it is, don’t make it about work, make it about fun.
· Tell them how much you care. There’s nothing wrong with telling your employees that you care about their well-being. Reach out to the people you see are more stressed or depressed than others and ask if there’s anything you can do to help.
These are just a few examples of ways you can help reduce the anxiety levels during the holidays. I think this year may be especially hard for people to find the joy in the season when they think about the families is Newtown. So take some time and go the extra mile.