“I’m digging myself out after the long weekend.” Sound familiar? Long holiday weekends seem to be both a blessing and a curse. The time away from the office and inbox is always welcomed and certainly needed to recharge. The downside is that when you return, everything that was there is still there, and then some. And we spend the first day or two getting back into the groove. Here are some tips to help you get back into the groove.
You are excited to be logging off and ready to start your weekend. I know, I’ve been there! But before you close everything down, take ten minutes to take stock. Review what’s on your desk (physical and electronic) and determine what is most important for when you are back in the office. Using whatever makes the most send for you, create a list of the outstanding items. This could be marking your emails with a category or indicator and/or creating a written list that you post next to the computer. Make it simple and easy to read and access. That way your post-vacation brain doesn’t have to strain to remember or get back up to speed.
Trying to attend to too many things at once can be overwhelming and something will surely suffer. Now apply that to Day One after a long weekend. You come back, all refreshed, ready to hit the ground running, only to find you now have more items on your list of must-do items. And your calendar, which was previously wide open, is now booked solid with meetings. You start wishing you were back on vacation and are looking ahead to the next weekend. To prevent this, before you leave for vacation, look at day one and block off time on your calendar to dedicate your attention to completing urgent items, updating a must-do list, etc. It doesn’t need to be a large block – just some pockets of dedicated space to focus on the priorities.
I work with too many clients that tell me: “I check my email to clear things out and to mentally prepare myself for what I am coming back to.” While I would love to say that we all live in eutopia and are able to 100% disconnect from technology on break, that is not always the case. This next tip is sure to spark some conversation, but for a realist like me and many of those I work with, it needs to be said. It is ok to check in on your email periodically. Yes, I just said that. Coming back from a vacation and not knowing what you are walking into can be stress-inducing. Taking 5-10 minutes to clear out the “junk” in your inbox and mentally prepare for the rest can give your brain the mental rest and preparation it needs to hit the ground running upon return.
We all need time away to recharge and relax. If you take some time to plan before your leave for the holiday and do what you need to do to check in while away, coming back won’t be as stressful or overwhelming.
This article reflects the views of the author and not necessarily those of Fairygodboss.
Kristy Busija, ACC, BCC is an executive coach and talent management consultant, known for helping individuals, teams and organizations unleash their potential, one conversation at a time. What is your Next conversation? Check out Next Conversation Coaching to see how she can help you today.