How to Get Through Week One of 2024

calendar of January 2024

Happy 2024, and welcome back! You made it! All the way through the first day of work on Jan. 2. Give yourself a hand. 

Many fortunate employees take paid time off for the week between Christmas and New Years. However, an extended holiday vacation can make anyone feel a bit rusty when returning to your desk. 

Sure, many can also find invigoration with the promise of a new year and a clear slate, but some of us could really use an extra hand getting through that first week. 

Our always resourceful PRNEWS audience provided us with some great suggestions via LinkedIn on how to make it through the first week of the new year and get back on track. Read up and know—you are not alone if you are feeling overwhelmed! 

On that overflowing email inbox…

Approach your inbox with a triage & prioritize mentality so you don’t get overwhelmed.One email at a timeClear out your inbox. Clear inbox = clear head.

On pitching…

Give the media the first week to catch up before turning on the pitching machine.

Prioritize. You're likely going to be overwhelmed with emails and colleagues playing "catch up" - but it is important to remember that editors and journalists are in the same situation, and not every issue needs to be tackled, pitched or addressed this week.

On self care…

Go for a daily morning walk. Clear and create content/events calendar for January. Plow through email. Be gentle with myself!

Being open and honest about the struggle - we’re all facing it, so let’s voice it! Giphy and memes are always good for that. Acknowledging in team messages that this is a daunting week and that it’s okay to ease back in; we don’t need to peak this week. Taking the time to connect with people 1:1 and hear about their holiday/new years ambitions and having some fun with it! Banter makes everything better

Just breathe. Be thoughtful, mindful and intentional with where you choose to spend your time and energy. HNY!

For those working with social media…

For those who might miss sleeping in…

I work in social media, so I took some time over the holidays for a much-needed social break. When I got back into the office today, I took time to catch up on social media news and scroll my feeds for any posts that sparked my creativity. Taking some time to think creatively is always a nice boost to your energy levels and motivation for the rest of the week.

…and for those already raring to go.

Go get 'em - and right away! The PR and creatives on my team have been in "hibernation" for the past week or so...they're ripe with ideas after the holidays.

On organization and prioritization…

1) Catch up on any big picture strategy your team put together by the end of 2023 and ensure team members can ask questions to feel comfortable and confident in the work for the upcoming year. 2) Conduct a media scan - any newsworthy moments pop up over the break you can leverage for internal comms, media buys or proactive thought leadership in Q1? 3) Start setting calendar holds for Q1 and the rest of the year for a break or two before calendars fill up.

To give myself permission to ease into the week that lies ahead. That means more reading/planning and writing fewer emails (but making those few emails be really quality and intentional with closest contacts to check in and wish them a happy new year).

Patience and pruning. Patience because everyone is easing back into the routine and pruning because this is the perfect week to re- evaluate everything. Do you really need that daily standup or that weekly recurring meeting, or could it be handled another way. Don’t accept anything as sacrosanct. If it no longer serves you or your goals, prune it out of your routine and do something else.

…and goal setting.

Don’t think you have to do everything everywhere all at once. Pace yourself and start the year off by being deliberate in what you want to accomplish and what your true priorities are.

And always remember…

Just because the calendar changes, the fundamentals of our work remain the same. We must always take a thoughtful, creative, and pragmatic approach to our work. If we focus on the basics and stay true to working strategically (more than just tactics) the changes we seek will always be improvements in 2024 (and beyond.)