Ahh December – the time when our personal lives get crazy, but the PR world slows down a little (yeah, I’m laughing, too). What’s a person, who’s used to juggling 3 billion things at once, to do when reporters and clients are often out-of-office enjoying family, merriment and the joyous season?

After I’ve twiddled my thumbs, surfed to the end of the internet and watched the paint dry, I like to take the quiet time to get myself together, because I can’t properly focus on my clients if I’m not in order.

Clean out old files.  The New Year is approaching (also, can we talk about how January lasted 42 months, but the rest of the year lasted a day?) and it’s time to toss those old files. Are you really going to look at a 2012 order slip for custom pens? I don’t think so. Take this time to go through your physical and digital files, delete old items and create your folders for the new year.

Meet with your teams. Use the slowdown to set separate team meetings with each account team and get proactive about the new year. Sit down and discuss what worked in 2018, what needs to change for 2019 and how the whole team can better work together to service the clients. These meetings also give you the opportunity to make adjustments to the teams, if necessary.

Organize your emails. Okay, I do this all year, but I think it’s a good rule of thumb for those who aren’t necessarily hyper organized. Take the time to tackle that inbox and delete unnecessary emails – like those HAROs from February 12 – and file those you don’t want to delete, but no longer need. Starting 2019 with a fresh, clean inbox will set you on the right path for the year.

Set your work resolution. What do you want to achieve this year? A promotion? Write down the steps you’re going to take to get you there. To bring in a new client? Create the plan to move forward. Take on more responsibility? Prepare a list. Then, use this time to talk to your manager about what you need to do to work toward your goal(s).

This is probably the most-important and least-followed tip. We work hard all year – our jobs are often listed as one of the most stressful. Everyone else is out getting jolly, why shouldn’t we? Use this slower time of the year to focus on yourself and your personal to-do list. Start your gym New Year’s resolution early (oh, come on, you know you make it every year), enjoy the beautifully decorated houses, stop and smell the pine trees.

However you use December, get ready because 2019 will be here before you know it. Here’s to a new year of success, happiness and rockin’ the PR world. Happy Holidays, everyone!

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