Do you remember going back to school after a summer of holidays, playing with your friends in the park until all hours, eating as much sugar as was humanly possible and literally forgetting how to write?
As you left the office for your well-deserved summer holiday, your smug-o-meter set to maximum as you put your out-of-office on, you stopped caring about anything but your welcome cocktail at the hotel, putting your flip-flops on for two weeks and diving into the pool.
For two blissful weeks, you didn’t have a care in the world.
But as you wait at the gate for your flight home with a case full of dirty clothes and £15 boxes of M&Ms you can get for £3 anywhere else on Earth, your brain start to re-calibrate into work mode, the eight thousand unread emails, unnecessary meeting following unnecessary meeting, the grief you’re going to get from your boss, the projects waiting for you and the god-awful commute.
One minute you’re sipping sangria losing your toes in the sand, the next you’re in a suit, wedged up against the unwashed armpit of a fat, sweaty unambitious middle manager on the annoyingly late Watford Junction to Euston train at 7am.
The ‘Autumn Adjustment’ feels like the end of the world, so much so that you wish you could chuck it all in and open a bar on Koh Samui, but it needn’t do.
In the words of Jazzie B, here are our top tips letting you know how to get ‘back to life, back to reality’, even if you don’t want to.
A Clean Work Space = A Happy Mind Place
The key to easing yourself back into the daily grind is to ensure that your desk is clutter-free. Loads of ‘stuff’ is a massive distraction and creates the unwanted concept that there’s more on your plate than there actually is.
File the stuff you don’t need (usually under ‘B’ for bin) and lose the detritus – stationery, coffee-stained mugs, branded crap from the last trade show you went to etc – and start as you mean to go on, even if that stuff will slowly creep back over the coming weeks.
You Can’t Do Everything
At least not on your first day back. Take tasks one at a time in order of priority and whatever you do, don’t schedule a meeting or a conference call for 9am on Monday morning. It can wait until Wednesday when your head’s back in it.
You’ve only got one pair of hands and they will be required to organise what’s on the agenda for the coming week.
Make a List
If you’re old-school, grab a clean notebook and make a list of what needs to be done. There’s little more satisfying than crossing off tasks as they’re completed and you’ll feel an overwhelming sense of satisfaction as you realise just how much you’re achieving in a seemingly short space of time.
If you’re a millennial, use Google Sheets or whatever you use and as tasks are completed, colour them in red.
Go Full On And You’ll Crack
There’s nothing worse than clock-watching, whether it’s for your lunch break or home time. You’ll be busy for sure but remember to take breaks. Go and grab a coffee, have a chat to the guys you haven’t seen for a while and chew the fat about who your team did or didn’t sign over the summer or really anything non-work related.
Ease yourself back into it and you’ll feel better about the long wait until the Christmas break!
Stay In Holiday Mode
We don’t mean coming into work in a Hawaiian shirt and drinking cheap rocket-fuel Grappa at 10am, rather it’s easier to come back to work if there’s something to look forward to. Organise a weekend away in the country with friends or family to break up the time between now and Christmas.
Throwing yourself into the deep-end on day one and continuing in that vein for four solid months will only add to your stress levels so take these tips and act on them. We promise you that you’ll feel better for it!
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