At the time of writing, Christmas is on the way! Woohoo! And after Christmas, you have the New Year Celebrations to look forward to! Yeehaw! And after the New Year, you have… darn it! You have those back to work feelings to put up with! Bah! It sucks, we know!
Fear not. While going back to work is inevitable after the Christmas holidays (or any other kind of holiday), there are ways to beat those back-to-work post-holiday blues – other than phoning in sick if you’re in employment, or having an extra day off if you run your own business!
#1: Organize your workstation before you start your holidays
You don’t want to come back to a messy desk or a disorganized office on your first day back at work, so before you break up for the holidays, have a tidy up. Declutter your desk and store everything away in the appropriate places. Wash your coffee cups, as you most certainly don’t want to come back to work to see something green growing in your crockery. Make sure you have everything you need to start the new year, from printer ink to paper clips. And perhaps give your workspace a makeover, with some new decor, family photos, and a fresh lick of paint, so you will have a more attractive place to come back to!
#2: Make the most of your holidays
When work is done for the year, leave it at the door. Don’t be tempted to spend time thinking about work, or even doing any work, unless it is absolutely necessary. So often we feel bad about going back to work because we haven’t done enough with our downtime, so make the most of your holidays. Relax as much as you need to, spend time with all the people you want to, and have as much fun as you possibly can. You might still resent going back to work, but you should feel more energised and ready for the return if your holidays have been good for you.
#3: Pace yourself on your first day back
If you’re working for an employer, this might not be easy, especially if you’re working for a real taskmaster. But hey, at least you won’t have time to think about your back-to-work woes if you are kept on task. On the other hand, if you are able to pace yourself, especially if you run your own business, the return to work will be easier for you. Start at your usual time, but don’t overtax yourself. Ease yourself back into work gently, and even finish a little earlier if you can. Sometimes, the first day back is the hardest, but by being kinder to yourself, the transition will be a smoother one.
#4: Think about the year ahead
If you are dreading going back to work, ask yourself why? Could it be that you are in need of a career change? You might want to look for a more rewarding job, so you won’t get to feel those post-holiday blues next year. Or you might want to action changes to make your time at work better, such as outsourcing tasks that you hate, or refocussing your energies into avenues that will grant you more enjoyment. And look in both your work and personal diaries. Is there anything you are looking forward to in the year ahead? If so, focus on them, instead of dwelling on any negatives about starting another year at work.