As the year winds down and clients and colleagues begin to take some much-deserved time off, the planner in me cannot help but start thinking about what is to come in 2023.
In our industry, you can never quite plan for everything, but I wanted to share a few tips to wrap up 2022 and make your work life easier when you head back to the office (or to your home office) in 2023.
6 Work Life Pro Tips For Preparing For Next Year
- Clear out your inbox. And I’m not just talking about 0 unread… Completely clear and organize all your emails. If you’re anything like me, there’s a little bit of anxiety that comes with being OOO for more than a day or two because I have this pit-in-my-stomach feeling of what my inbox will look like upon my return. Going through everything, cleaning out what I don’t need, and organizing the rest will make it much less daunting when I open Outlook in 2023.
- Make a 2023 priorities list. For each of my clients (or project teams), I have started to write down anything that gets punted to 2023 during our December calls. There’s nothing worse than returning from holiday and thinking, “We had something we wanted to do, but we can’t remember it now.” This priority list could make agenda planning smoother and kick off the year with solid goals and tasks.
- Tackle that downloads folder. Woof. I have many unnecessary files in my downloads, and taking the time to clear that out will help your machine run better, and your mind starts fresh in 2023.
- While you’re at it, give that computer desktop a good scrub. The endless files on your desktop will still be on your computer even if you move them to your documents file or a single folder on your desktop (mine is entitled “everything and more”). I know it’s hard to keep up with this process all year long, but this is the perfect time to get it organized and ready to roll for a new year.
- Take stock of your 2022 goals. Okay, I know that not everyone does this, but if you do, look at your personal and professional goals for 2022 and see how you faired (you can even give your annual review a look and see where you are on those professional goals). There is no failure in not completing those goals — priorities shift every day, but it gives you a chance to reevaluate where you are versus where you were when you made those goals, celebrate your accomplishments, and change focus to planning for what is next. As someone who loves goal setting, this is one of my favorite parts of the end of the year.
- And finally, unplug. This one is hard for me (what do you expect, I work in digital!), but it could not be more critical for you to enjoy the much-needed break and recharge for another year. I talk about mental health in conjunction with work production because they go hand in hand. If you feel burnt out and do not take the time to rest and recharge, everything will stay the same in the new year. You do your best work when you are the best you — you owe it to yourself to unplug entirely by turning off your notifications, setting that OOO autoreply, and taking in some of the life in work/life balance.
This is in no way an exhaustive list of prepping for 2023, but I hope it helped you start thinking of how you can set yourself up for a solid start for the year so that you can enjoy the holiday season.