It felt like only yesterday that you were putting on that out-of-office and locking those desk drawers before leaving the office for that much-needed holiday. Returning to work after some time off is never easy and very often we’re overcome with panic and anxiety the night before our first day back. The minute you set foot into the office, the joys of sleeping in, relaxing on the beach and lazy afternoons seem to become distant memories.
It felt like only yesterday that you were putting on that out-of-office and locking those desk drawers before leaving the office for that much-needed holiday. Returning to work after some time off is never easy and very often we’re overcome with panic and anxiety the night before our first day back. The minute you set foot into the office, the joys of sleeping in, relaxing on the beach and lazy afternoons seem to become distant memories. Going back to the grindstone and getting back into a routine can be tough, so here are a few helpful tips for how you can beat those back-to-work blues and settle down back at work faster.
Take an extra day (or two)
Giving yourself an extra day or two to finish off admin or recover a little if you’ve been travelling can really make the holiday-to-work transition that much easier. Whilst some may think this is simply prolonging the inevitable, at the end of the day a four or three day week sounds much more manageable than a full week.
Ease into things
The last thing you want to do after a holiday is dive head first into work without any planning beforehand. Ease back into things slowly and be sure to pace yourself for the first day or two. Creating a to-do list can really help you prioritise things and having a plan of action will mean less anxiety and a clearer head. It’s also a good idea to tidy up a little too: make sure your desk is clean and organised because a clean desk means a fresh start.
A little preparation is good
A few days before returning to work, you should consider scanning your emails and perhaps categorising them. This means that when you do return to the office, you won’t have to face the daunting task of sorting through all the emails in your now bulging Inbox. Rather lessen the blow and make things easier for yourself upon your return.
Don’t be so quick to turn that out-of-office off
The minute you turn your out-of-office off, it may signal to people that you are back at work and available. This can result in you being bombarded with many requests at which point you may feel completely overwhelmed, just as you’re trying to ease back into things. Rather leave it on until you’re ready for your clients and colleagues to know you are completely available. This will give you an opportunity to get organised and do a little planning or strategising for the coming weeks, before having to deal with current tasks and issues.
After a relaxing holiday, it’s never a bad idea to get those creative juices flowing and to get involved in an interesting new project. Trying something a little different to what you usually do can be very inspiring and it’s a great way to kick off the New Year. It will give you a challenge to focus on and at the same time indicate to your superiors that you are driven and ready to work hard. It’s a win-win situation.
Something to work towards
Many people get their next holiday booked soon after returning to work as this way, they can get back to the office knowing that they’ll be off again soon. Having something to work towards (especially if it’s another getaway or simply a few days off) makes the days seem more bearable and somehow makes all the reward on the other side of all the hard work, that much sweeter.
Perhaps the most important thing to remember though when returning to work is that the post-holiday blues are temporary. After a week or so you’ll be back into the swing of things and hopefully feeling more positive than when you first came back. Good luck for a successful and prosperous 2015.
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