Tips & Tricks

Part 4

The wonderful thing about this season is you might be looking forward to taking a proper break (or maybe you’ve just had one?) But it can be a bit of a culture shock to jump straight back in to your daily work routine.

Here’s our top advice for how to soften the blow…

1. De-clutter your desk

There’s something about coming back to mess that can feel like an unfortunate metaphor on a rainy Monday morning… so make sure your desk feels like a haven, not a burden! 

Giving your desk a good tidy and clean is a good activity to get you back in the headspace to work – the few minutes you spend sorting it gives you a chance to think over what other tasks you need to prioritise now you’re getting back into the swing of things. Which brings us to tip number two…

2. Get perspective on your to-do list

One of the advantages of taking a break is it can be a great way to show up where your priorities need to be. Chances are, anything truly urgent is now clearly your next step, whereas other tasks which coped without you for a week or so maybe aren’t needing as much of your time and attention as you always thought. 

Working out how to tackle your back-to-work to-do list is a great way to get you in good habits for sorting your ongoing workload. Our favourite method is to organise that pile of things to pick up using the 1-3-5 rule (we’ve even written a handy guide to get you started). 

But don’t let your new sense of perspective stop there! You should also consider…

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3. Think about how your break made you feel

It’s okay to admit that you’ve got post-holiday blues… but sometimes it’s worth recognising that they’re a symptom of a bigger problem. Was there anything in particular that felt good to walk away from? 

While it’s almost impossible to love every part of your working day, you shouldn’t feel bad about wanting to change things for the better. If you take this opportunity to work out the things you missed (maybe a task you always get great satisfaction from, or a colleague you miss chatting with), and the things you really didn’t, it might help you reshape your workday for the better. 

Think about how you could include more of the positives in your workday. Maybe that’s asking your manager for more training and opportunities in a part of your job that you love, maybe it’s asking for more team support in a part of your job that you struggle with. It might even just be setting aside one lunch break a week for a proper catch-up with that office friend who makes working life more bearable!

4. Give your body a boost

Be honest… do you end up indulging more when you’re away? 

We’re all guilty of choosing lots of treats when we’re on holiday – it is a lovely break from the normal routine, after all! But it’s important to recognise that your body might need a bit of TLC if you’ve spent the last couple of weeks thoroughly indulging yourself at an all-inclusive resort (or just going somewhere with great fish and chips). 

Make sure you drink plenty of water, and have some fresh fruit and veggies on hand to keep yourself out of trouble if your stomach is still on holiday time. Also, don’t underestimate your need for sleep after a holiday – while you might have been able to lounge on the beach more than usual, all the extra travel and activities can leave you feeling pretty wiped. Don’t feel guilty about booking in some early nights to get back on track!

5. Recognise your value

It sounds like an odd way to put it, but when you take a break from something, it forces you to think about what would happen if you’re not there. 

What jobs did you need to reassign? Whose workload got bigger? Did you feel that there was a lot of pressure not to go, or did reassigning your workload feel a bit underwhelming?

There’s nothing wrong with taking stock of what your absence means to your workplace, and looking at re-balancing your load accordingly. If the lack of your presence caused all manner of problems, maybe you’re being asked to shoulder too much without enough support. If you felt that there wasn’t a big enough impact, maybe you’re ready to take on some new opportunities and challenges.

Either way, it’s a great time to think about the value you bring, and how you deserve to strike the right balance between challenge and reward. 

We hope you’ve enjoyed these tips, and they help you beat those post-holiday blues. You’ll be back in the swing of things before you know it!

Have a great week!

Join us next week for Part 5 of Tips and Tricks!

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