When people talk about ‘retail therapy,’ they’re usually referring to the practice of making oneself feel better through shopping.
If you are part of the hectic world of retail management this time of year, the term takes on a whole new meaning, as in:
You own/operate or work in a busy retail store.
It’s Christmas time.
You might really need some therapy by the time the season is over.
We’re in the home stretch of the busiest shopping season of the year, and we’ve got tips to help you survive (and thrive!) these last few days before Christmas.
9 Simple Self-Care Tips for Retail Warriors
- Stay hydrated. If coffee is what keeps you going, try to drink an equal amount of water to take great care of your body. Set a goal for water intake, and keep on sipping.
- Schedule bathroom breaks. We know — you’re not in kindergarten anymore. But before you realize it, ‘I gotta go’ turns into ‘I’ve had to go for three hours.’ Plan a five minute break every two hours, and take it.
- Reach for a snack. If you’re hangry (that’s hungry + angry), you won’t be able to put on your best face for your staff & customers. Keep protein bars, fresh fruit, string cheese, and other quick snacks handy to grab on the go. Starving yourself until the store closes at night is not a winning strategy.
- Begin and end with prayer. You are probably putting a lot of pressure on yourself this month. You’re tired from long days on your feet. And you probably have more on your plate than just today’s sales tally. Build a few extra minutes into your morning, and again in the evening, to thank God for His blessings, to ask Him for peace in your day, and for eyes to see who could use a kind word at the store today — whether that’s a frazzled member of your team, or a frustrated customer. Inviting God to be part of your day is a beautiful way to set the tone.
- Outsource a few to-dos. Whether your dog needs walking, presents need wrapping, or there is baking to finish before the in-laws arrive, if you can hire someone else to help, go for it. Offer to pay a couple of teenagers from your church youth group to wrap gifts or walk the pup. Order pies or goodies from a local bakery or restaurant. Ask for recommendations for a house cleaner if you need help getting ready for guests. You are incredibly capable, but NOT doing it all can feel pretty good, too.
- Take an evening off.If you find yourself checking emails or obsessing over shop details after hours, choose an evening between now and Christmas to completely unplug, and do something that brings you joy. Take a Christmas lights cruise, and let someone else do the driving. See a movie you’ve been looking forward to. Read a magazine. Relax in front of the fireplace doing nothing. Those emails will still be there tomorrow. #relax #unwind #destress
- Breathe deeply. That’s it. Just plan 10 minutes in your office, or at home, to focus on your breathing and let your mind and body take it down a notch. That adrenaline-pumping excitement can only last for so long, and our engines can really use a cool down when we’re going at top speed all day.
- Cultivate small wins. One thing you can do for yourself and your team is to celebrate small successes from the day before. Maybe you broke a prior sales record. Maybe Trent was able to help a grateful customer find the perfect gift for his grandmother. Maybe your store just broke 1,000 Followers on Facebook. Maybe Karen finally sold that goofy penguin-themed wall clock that’s been gathering dust for 3 years. Keep an eye out for moments worth celebrating, and share them on the daily.
- Walk it off. Once or twice a day, put on your cozy winter jacket and pop outside for a few minutes. The fresh air will help you clear your head and gain perspective on whatever is happening in your day, and you’ll likely come back refreshed for the work at hand. If you’re able to, encourage your employees to do the same.
A couple of weeks from now we’ll enter a new year, and an entirely new decade. You’ll have new chances to grow your business, try new products, and train your staff to be the best they can be for an incredible 2020 and beyond. For today...smile. Do the best that you can. Encourage your team. And remember to plan moments into your day to catch your breath so you can keep on going. You’ve got this!
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