For many people, the weeks of the Fourth of July, Thanksgiving, and Christmas tend to be popular times where they use their paid time off (PTO), if they work for an organization or they take the week off, if they work for themselves.
Although this time off absolutely calls for spending time with friends and family and generally relaxing, it’s also a great opportunity to improve your professional skills or tackle personal projects that may get pushed to the back burner the majority of the time due to the busyness of each week. Time off gives your brain the opportunity to refresh and spark new creative juices, so if you’re feeling inspired to get a move on things, check out these tips for how you can spend your week off.
Whether you own a business or work for an organization, it’s crucial to have an updated personal brand online, especially as it relates to securing new opportunities. Take this time to do a thorough audit of your online presence and see what you can improve to stand out to potential future employers, new clients, or publications for press features.
Do you use social media professionally? If not, you should! Whether you’re only focusing on LinkedIn or incorporating other platforms as well, take a look through your profiles and follow this list:
This may be the time to consider if you want to expand to other platforms as well.
Do you have a blog and / or newsletter? Having at least one of those is crucial for establishing thought leadership, especially if there are topics you feel passionate about and want a medium to portray those thoughts. If you do already have a blog or newsletter that you write, use this time to get ahead on your content and schedule it out so that it’s out of sight, out of mind.
Do you have a goal to be a guest on more podcasts, featured in more publications, or give talks at conferences? Making those press features happen all comes down to researching these opportunities and pitching yourself as an expert that’s a great fit. Although you may not want to actually pitch these journalists or organizations during this time because those individuals themselves are also likely to be off and therefore not seeing your emails, you can absolutely do the “prep work” so that when everyone is back in office, you have items ready to go.
What does that prep work entail? Researching the right opportunities, writing a pitch that will intrigue the recipient, and scheduling the email to be sent in a week or so.
Pro tip: make sure to add Massachusetts Business Network to your list of publications and podcasts to pitch!
Are you guilty of purchasing courses, signing up for webinars, and buying business books all year long that you tell yourself you’ll take action on but never do because things get too busy? Now’s the time to catch up on all of this content!
Go back through your emails to make a list of the courses you’ve purchased as well as webinar replays you have so that you can spend time watching this content and learning. Be sure to gather a stack of all of the unread business books you’ve collected throughout the year as well so you can start diving into those. Even if you’re sitting on the couch in comfy clothes with your laptop to do this, you’re still improving your skills in the process.
Here’s the most important thing, though — don’t just watch the content and forget about it! Make sure to actually implement what you learned.
Have you been dreaming about some type of passion project that may or may not be related to your current line of work that you haven’t had a ton of time to devote to? You’ll have all the time you need this week to start making a plan! Whether you want to launch a business, write a book, start a blog, or something else, you’ll have the space and refreshed creativity to really put your head down and focus.
Fun fact: Massachusetts Business Network was planned during the week of Christmas! It’s exciting to see what can happen when you have the energy and time to focus on other projects.
After reading through these suggestions, you likely have a big list in front of you to tackle during your week off! As mentioned earlier, be sure to still dedicate time to truly relax, but you’ll also be glad when you take advantage of this extra time to focus on the things that are important to you.