The summer solstice has officially come and gone, and with the onset of soaring temperatures and gas prices comes a welcome reprieve for much of the nation’s workforce —vacation. For many employees, the draw of warm weather and carefree nature of the summer months makes it an ideal time to step away from their office computers and “unplug” for a little while.
With many employees getting ready to head to the leisure spots of their choosing, it can be easy to get caught up in the excitement of stealing away from the office for a vacation. While there’s nothing wrong with taking some “me” time, it’s important to come back to work refreshed and ready to get back into the swing of things.
While a return to work following a week of blissful relaxation can be jarring, following these four tips may help make the transition from vacation back into work much easier to master.
- Plan ahead
Before whisking off to some tropical island, make sure you have your ducks in order at work. Communicate to your coworkers that you’ll be away so they won’t be caught off guard when you’re unavailable. In addition, try to see larger and more difficult projects to completion before the vacation. This will not only give you a sense of accomplishment before you leave, but will also allow you a smoother reentry into the office upon your return. With the larger tasks behind you, you’re then able to take on the smaller tasks — missed phone calls or emails that accumulated in your absence —and ease back into your normal work pace.
- Keep your out of office message on the first day back
You know that charming message you left on your voicemail letting inquiring minds know that for the next week you would be relaxing on a beach in the Bahamas? Leave it on your first day back. By leaving it on, you’re allowing yourself time to sift through those missed emails and sort out what projects to tackle next. Your coworkers will see you back in the office and know you’re available to help, but letting clients know may drag you into new projects and expectations too quickly. You’ll be doing yourself a favor by giving yourself undivided time to catch up on the work you missed.
- Get plenty of sleep
Our sleep schedules tend to get all out of whack when we go on vacation. While an erratic sleep schedule works just fine on vacation, it just won’t cut it once when we find ourselves waking up to a piercing early morning. For your first few nights back, try to get to sleep at least an hour earlier than usual to ensure you are well-rested when the alarm clock goes off.
- Share memories of your vacation with others
It’s only natural to want to share memories of your blissful time away. It’s likely among the precious few times of the year when you’re able to relax completely. Sharing memories of your travels will remind you of your time away and can elevate your mood, putting you in a positive mindset to take on the tasks of the day. In addition, engaging with your coworkers through your stories can build a better sense of community and translate into a more dynamic and collaborative work environment.
For additional information on ensuring your team stays productive this summer, please call a member of our Advice & Resolution team at 919-878-9222 or 336-668-7746.
Photo Source: Ra’anan Niss.