I hope all of you had a fantastic Thanksgiving!

I have always viewed Thanksgiving as the start of the crunch season. When I was still in college the start of December kicked off the countdown to final exams and final essays. At UPS it is the start of peak season. It is a time of year when a huge chunk of my income comes from a rush of people looking to ship Christmas presents. All hands are needed on deck, so it is a great chance to pick up extra hours. In the past, I have worked up to 12 hours per day, six days per week processing packages. Since then, I’ve cut back on the hours I work during the holidays, but some days still range up to ten hours.

Just like with school, I don’t mind the increased working hours. I view the period as a journey I must make with a destination in mind. For school, that destination was a month-long break. At work, the destination is the Christmas and New Year’s breaks, and a return to normal hours in the middle of January.

The days are long, but changing my perspective helps me cope. Ten-hour days at work are a chance to catch on all of my favorite podcasts I let go by the wayside during the summer. Working earlier in the day means that I have to wake up earlier and hone my productivity skills. On a more personal level, going to work earlier also means that I am able to see co-workers I don’t normally interact with at other times during the year. Despite the challenges, I actually enjoy the crunch season. I’m not going to say some days aren’t incredibly frustrating, but I do love emerging from my comfort zone.


Are the holidays a challenge for you at work? Are you busy preparing for big changes in January? Or is this the time of year where you can relax and enjoy the holidays?

Rittenhouse Square Holiday Lights - Michael Murphy of Flickr

Rittenhouse Square Holiday Lights by Michael W Murphy of Flickr