9 Tips to Help You Enjoy a Healthy Fourth Quarter

The fourth quarter can be a challenge on many levels; working on client holiday programs can be hectic, even more so when you’re also juggling your own holiday plans.  Staying healthy is an important part of a successful season, and we’ve got 9 tips to help you out!

Get a Flu Shot
A bout of the flu usually has severe symptoms for two to three days, and other symptoms lingering for one to two weeks.  That’s time you don’t have to spare when you’re in the holiday crunch.  Flu shots can significantly reduce your risk of developing flu illness; according to the CDC, the flu vaccine reduced the risk in the 2015-2016 flu season by 47%.  Even if you’ve never gotten the flu, consider getting a vaccination—there’s a first time for everything!  Flu shots are available many places, from doctor’s offices and pharmacies to pop-up vaccination clinics and even some employers.  If you aren’t sure where to get yours, check out the HealthMap Vaccine Finder.

Disinfect Your Desk
An office desk can have 400 times more bacteria than a toilet seat!  The hands of an average office worker come into contact with around 10 million bacteria daily, which are easily transferred to work surfaces and equipment—including items that come into close proximity to your mouth, such as your phone.  Keep your exposure as low as possible by periodically cleaning everything on your desk, from the desktop to your keyboard to your pens (especially if you’re like me and tend to stick them in your mouth), with a disinfecting wipe or cleaning solution.

Wash Your Hands
Remember those 10 million daily bacteria?  Handwashing is an important step in disinfecting year-round, but of particular importance during the fourth quarter flu season.

Sharing and Caring
Germs are easily passed person-to-person by contact with shared items.  Start by investing in a collection of pens (you probably have plenty of samples, or you can pick up a box on the cheap at any store selling office supplies) and using your own wherever you go.  Also be conscious of the risks of shared food—that bowl of candy might look delicious, but how many other fingers have already left germs behind?—and never share your beverage.

Stay Hydrated
Drinking plenty of fluid—the traditional recommendation is 64 ounces a day—can help combat fatigue caused by dehydration and suppress those afternoon cravings for sugary, carb-laden goodness that many of us struggle with.  According to the Mayo Clinic, it doesn’t even have to be water; any beverage or food containing water can count toward your daily total.

Mind Your Meals
Skipping breakfast or lunch might save you a few minutes, but you could end up paying for it later!  Eating even a small meal can refresh you and keep your metabolism active, making it easier to focus on your tasks.  Making sure that your meals are well-balanced, with healthy options instead of quickly-digested snacks and candies, will help to maximize the benefits.

Keep Active
Regular exercise is invaluable during the fourth quarter, providing a means to stay healthy and work off the stress of a long day of selling.  Don’t think that exercise is limited to the gym, though!  Even small breaks for moving around during the workday can provide benefits both physical and mental.  Set an alarm every couple of hours to remind you to stand up and stretch.

Rest Up
We’ve all heard the saying: “I’ll sleep when I’m dead.”  A full night’s sleep can become a bit of a luxury during the fourth quarter, but it’s a luxury that we all need to indulge in as much as possible.  Without proper sleep, your body lacks the energy to not only perform your daily tasks, but also to effectively fight off illness.

Pace Yourself
It’s easy to develop a sort of tunnel vision when you’re working on something; you get into a groove and everything else falls away until you look up and realize that it’s several hours later and your coffee is long-since cold.  Conversely, some days it’s difficult to focus at all, when you’re trying to accomplish three things at once and distractions keep coming up.  Time management systems, such as the Pomodoro Technique, can help with both of these, providing a sequence of scheduled productivity and breaks that encourages focus while also allowing for periods of decompression to help avoid burnout.

Taking care of yourself during the fourth quarter can be challenging, but it’s an important part of your success.  Being mindful of good practices and following these tips will help to keep you healthy and selling at your best!