Hey, it’s a leap year! A quick reminder, since this month whizzed by so fast, you probably didn’t realize you get an extra day this year. Simply put, a leap year is a calendar year that includes an additional day added to keep the calendar year synchronized with the astronomical year or seasonal year.
Leap year only happens once every four years, so how will you use that precious day and live it up to its fullest extent? Here are some creative ideas to make your extra day count by improving yourself and your team.
1. Take a day to reset
I don’t know about you, but for me, January felt like an entire year in itself, and February put the pedal to the metal. This year is moving fast, and it can be taxing as you attempt to keep up.
Mental wellness is essential, especially when you’re building a business and a life. Allow yourself a leap day to reset and refocus. Taking a mental health day can feel wrong, although it shouldn’t. When you’re driven, taking time for yourself can make you feel guilty. Yet if your mental health and wellness go unchecked, it will lead to burnout.
If you’ve been putting in long hours to implement goals, take a day for a mental reset. It will infuse you with new energy and determination to dive back into your work. So, use your extra day to take better care of yourself.
Feeling scatterbrained? Perhaps you should journal your thoughts? Use an app or a journal, like the Atomic Habits Journal, created by a habit-building expert James Clear. The journal is designed to lead you on a path to better, lasting habits, with the flexibility to make it your own.
Sleep in a bit, sit with a warm cup of coffee or tea and let your pen flow as you empty your thoughts into your journal — and at the same time — clear your mind.
For your team
2. Be the cool boss
Your team is all too familiar with the tune—growth, revenue, and stats. But take this extra day to connect with your team and be the cool boss. The leader that sees your team as people and not cogs in the machine.
If your team came out of the gates strong this year, consider giving them the extra day off to spend time with friends, family, or some much needed “me” time. This may be a rare occasion when they get to take a day for themselves since other people won’t likely demand their time and energy that day (i.e., while kids are at school or daycare; and a significant other is at work). If you can’t swing an entire day, offer a half-day. It’s a small, kind gesture that goes a long way.
3. Celebrate with your team
If you can’t swing a day or half-day off, plan a Leap Year party to celebrate “wins” during the first few months of the year. It will be a nice surprise that will make the day feel special. Your employees will feel appreciated, and you can show your employees they’re loved by celebrating small milestones of success.
4. Start a team challenge
Perhaps you want to build a stronger and more cohesive company culture? If so, strengthen your team while having a good time to break the monotony of a long day. Take the day to make your team rejection-proof.
Help your team overcome rejection. There’s even an app to help you. Use the DareMe app to set up a company-wide challenge that allows your team to move outside of their comfort zone to adapt and cope with rejection, making them a formidable organization. It will get your team out of their seats to participate in fun and crazy tasks.
The app was developed by Jia Jiang, a rejection expert who earned the title after doing a 100 Days of Rejection Challenge where he sought out rejection through wild asks of strangers. The app is modeled after his experience and can push your team to greater heights while bringing them closer as a unit while supplying them with endless laughter.
For your company
5. Create your own holiday (and market it)
If you’re going to celebrate with your employees, you might as well celebrate with your customers too. Unlike Black Friday, when everyone’s inboxes are full of holiday deals, you can stand out from competitors by creating your unique holiday promotion. Promote your company-wide holiday in a fun and creative way across all of your marketing channels.
If the idea sounds far-fetched, consider the success of Amazon’s Prime Day, an annual shopping holiday that’s exclusive to Prime subscribers. “Introduced in 2015 in part to celebrate Amazon’s 20th anniversary, the first Amazon Prime Day was a one-day-only retail holiday for Prime members that sought to overtake Black Friday as the sales event of the year.”
Last year, it was a huge success. “During the 48-hour sale event held on July 15-16, members bought more than 175 million items. It was the biggest shopping day in company history until it was surpassed by Cyber Monday shortly after, a familiar pattern of record-breaking.”
6. Take a brand inventory
Often, we put certain tasks on the back burner if they don’t result in immediate ROI. Take your extra day this year to follow through on those tasks. For example, every company can benefit from a branding inventory.
Ken Schmidt, former Director of Communications at Harley-Davidson and branding expert, believes in the effectiveness of a Competitive Noise Survey. In the exercise, you scan your competitors and recap the language they use to describe their brand. From there, eliminate everything that’s been said by other companies from your messaging to create a new and fresh sales and marketing copy that sounds different from all other brands (because it is).
Jessica Welch is passionate about helping others and sees her work with BigSpeak as a great way to help spread knowledge. Jessica received a Bachelor’s degree in English, Creative Writing with a minor in Anthropology from California Polytechnic State University. After graduating, she spent a year teaching at a low-income high school in Oahu, HI.
© YFS Magazine. All Rights Reserved. Copying prohibited. All material is protected by U.S. and international copyright laws. Unauthorized reproduction or distribution of this material is prohibited. Sharing of this material under Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International terms, listed here, is permitted.