Summer vacation is a chance to unwind, spend time with friends and family, and take in as much sunlight as you can. Which means that the prospect of returning to a too-cold office in order to stare at your computer screen while wearing uncomfortable clothing can leave you feeling stressed. You’re worried about getting hit by the post-vacation blues. Heres how to avoid them.
1. Start Back Slowly Before Going Full Speed. Pace yourself and allow your schedule to slowly pick back up rather than doing difficult projects or tasks right away. Within a few weeks you’ll be back in the swing of things and not so down because you will have given your mind and body time to readjust.
2. Plan in a Transitional Day. When you plan your trip, give yourself one transitional day before you go back for laundry, grocery shopping, and adjusting to jet lag, for instance. Avoid checking your work email on vacation, but on your transitional day, open your inbox with one task: deleting unnecessary messages and prioritizing messages that need responses. This will slowly bring you back to the work mindset and ease the culture shock.
3. Return Mid-Week When Possible. When you plan your return for mid-week, there is an opportunity to catch up with email and projects, touch base with important people and then have another weekend around the corner! This makes re-entry more gentle, and mid-week travel is cheaper and less stressful!
4. Create Healthy Personal Boundaries. Vacations are filled with self-care, great food, reading, hobbies, travel and activities that fuel our energy. Back at work, it’s easy to let go of all these things until our next vacation. Create healthy personal boundaries with yourself to inject small activities that refuel your energy, regardless of how busy you are and how much you tell yourself you “can’t.”