How could you not love what you do when you are pursuing your passion? Most successful entrepreneur’s love what they do and they work it more than a 5 day 40 hour a week schedule. But let’s face it, we all need to decompress and take a break. I admit I fully take advantage of shorter days at the office and more time off during the summer. So I know how hard it is to get back into the swing of things when summer starts to wind down and vacation is officially over.
Honestly, I can’t think of a harder transition for me. I love the sun and the water, going out to eat and listening to local bands. I cherish my time at the beach and time that I spend with friends and family during the summer months, I literally suffer from summer fever. Despite the grudge of having to get back to business, I have found that being prepared to transition from summer fun to your regular schedule will increase the efficiency and alleviate the stress of your first week back.
Here are 7 tips that help me to make my first week back to the office less stressful:
- Take the day off – Use the last day you have off to stay home and get ready for the week. Also, to rest maybe read a book and go to bed nice and early. Make sure you make a list of the most important things you have to get done the next day. Pick out your clothes, prepare your breakfast, pack everyone’s lunch, whatever prep work that will make your first day back easier.
- Get in as early as you can – Allow yourself some uninterrupted quiet time as soon as you get in to tackle any piles you may have left on your desk or some emails you have been waiting to answer. It will allow you to get your mind back into the work mindset and help you to get started with a cleaner slate.
- Don’t try to take on the world – There will undoubtedly be a lot of things to do when you have been off for a while. Trying to do everything will just stress you out. Just stick to the list you made the night before and do the best you can. Don’t work through lunch, you need the break so you don’t burn yourself out the first day back.
- Play upbeat music – You want to stay awake and keep yourself in a good mood, playing upbeat positive music will help. Listen to a positive book or podcast on your way to work to get you in the right frame of mind.
- Get help at home – Have a talk with your kids or spouse/partner and ask them to especially help you out this week. Explain its hard for everyone to get back to their routine after the summer and summer vacations if they all pitch in. Give everyone something to do so that you can come home and enjoy more time with them. If you didn’t prepare your dinner for that night order out, don’t stress.
- Do not schedule meetings – You know the first week back to work will bring surprises and unexpected events. There will definitely be a fire or 3 you may have to put out. Phone calls you were supposed to return before vacation. messes you forgot to clean up. I suggest not scheduling any meetings at least for the first day or two so you leave flexibility in your schedule to handle all this.
- Prep and get to bed early – If you prepare dinner in advance or order out and made sure you leave work on time you should have a more relaxing night. So prep again for the next day and make sure you get to bed early again. Thank everyone for pitching in and give them things to do to help the next day too. Promise everyone a fun night out, with your spouse on Friday night and kids on Saturday, to reward yourselves for getting through your first week back unscathed.
I promise that with some preparation your first week shouldn’t be so bad. Your willingness to take it slowly will certainly help you from tiring yourself out and will make getting back to the grind much easier. Make sure you don’t forget to take time for you each day to eat and regroup and don’t forget to plan something fun for the weekend!