For the benefit of my US readers, when I say “holiday” I mean “vacation” although this could apply to “holiday” meaning “christmas” as much as it could to “vacation” meaning “holiday”. Confused? Yes, me too.
Anyway I’ve recently returned from a very enjoyable 2 week holiday in Turkey and whilst there are elements of my batteries that feel fully recharged I have to say that the first couple of days back have been nothing short of a struggle. In fact I feel like I need a holiday to get over it.
For me, the biggest issue I have is taking it easy when I return. My mind is racing with a million and one things that need doing, both in the business and in my personal/home life and, combined with the inevitable reflection that occurs when I’m just sitting around a pool reading for 2 weeks I tend to return with big plans and a head bursting with ideas and urgency.
Couple that with tiredness and the awkward readjustment into working life and I often find that unless I take a step back I could quite easily burn myself out before I’ve even got back into the swing of things.
So, to both help myself and the rest of you out there that might be suffering with the post holiday blues, here are 5 tips to help you cope
1 – Prioritise your tasks. Write a list of all the things that need doing – split them up into work and home/personal and mark them in order of importance. Rome wasn’t built in a day – in fact I don’t know how long it took to build but there was still scaffolding around some of the buildings when I visited a couple of years ago so I’m guessing it was more than a week. Tackle them in a sensible order over a sensible timescale. If some of those tasks involve big life changes, break them down further, do a little bit at a time and don’t try to do too much.
2 – Get back into your normal sleep pattern. Even if you’ve only travelled a short distance on your holidays, chances are you’ll have been keeping different hours on holiday than you normally would – late nights drinking aren’t compatible with an effective working life so, look after yourself and rest
3 – Remember that work is your choice – You can’t go on holiday without the money to pay for it and you can’t have the money to pay for it without working so, remind yourself that it’s your choice to work – nobody’s holding a gun to your head, you work to earn the money to pay for the things you enjoy so, if you’re feeling depressed about being back at work, remind yourself why you’re doing it. If your holiday has given you the opportunity to reflect on your current work situation and led you to believe that you’re really not happy there, take positive steps to find alternative employment.
4 – Allow yourself time to recover. Going back to work the day after you return from holiday is a recipe for disaster. If you have sufficient holiday allowance, give yourself another couple of days off, that way you can not only get all of your home based tasks out of the way, you’ll be returning to work far more rested and positive than if you hauled yourself back in several hours after you’ve stepped off the plane.
5 – Make positive changes. There will be many things from your holiday way of life that you don’t necessarily do whilst back at home. For me, I’ve really enjoyed reading more, have not missed television one bit (particularly the news) and have only checked my social media profiles (particularly facebook) once a day at most. Those small changes have really helped me to improve my mindset now I’m back home and, whilst I can’t make a change as drastic as “sit around a swimming pool sipping gin and tonic more often” I have found that these 3 small changes have really improved my post holiday life. A holiday has given me the opportunity to really notice the negative impact that not reading enough and spending too much time watching TV and checking facebook has had on my life and I’m glad to say I’m still maintaining those habits several weeks after returning to my normal life.
And, if all else fails, book another holiday then at least you’ve got that to look forward to!
Happy (post) holidays!
Inspired Business Development
Unit K9 Cradley Enterprise Centre
T:01384 566 078