Saturday, November 17, 2007

Staying Sane Through the Holiday Networking Rush

One of the crazy things that I notice about holidays is that, despite my natural inclination to stick around the house in my pajamas and read books with a cup of tea until it's finally warm outside, I'm constantly busy... not only do I have family and friends to deal with, holiday cards to send out, and presents to buy, every networking group that I am involved with has their Annual Holiday Event - that one night that is, apparently, Not to be Missed. I do more networking in November and December than I do almost the entire year, and it's a bit of a challenge keeping up with it all.

Somehow, however, I manage to stay sane through all of this, and here are a couple of my tips to help you stay sane as well.

1. Loosen up your expectations for events. Holiday events are a chance to reconnect with your group, have good conversations, have a glass of wine. Don't stress out so much about getting a ton of business cards (even though you'll likely meet a ton of people) - you're much better off finding 2-3 good folks to keep in touch with. Trying to keep track of a dozen cards each night will just stress you out. This is also a good tip for regular networking events, but it's especially important during the holidays.

2. Set aside ample time for yourself. Read a book, take a bath, enforce a few hours on the weekend that's devoted to just you. I'm serious about this one - do NOT skimp on it. Today, after a long week of networking events, appointments, and other such busyness, I spent the entire morning reading Winnie the Pooh and relaxing on my couch. It was terrific.

3. Don't overdo it. This goes for wine, food, talk, and even the events themselves. It's tempting to go to all of them and stay all night, but it's really not going to do anybody any good if you're exhausted all the next day. Check in with yourself periodically to make sure that you're not about to drop, and don't be afraid to leave a bit early, if you don't have the energy to keep going.

Happy holidays, and happy networking!

1 comment:

Crissy said...

very good advice!