The winter holidays are a popular time for vacation – specifically in a warm place. A trip or even a staycation is well-deserved and essential for maintaining not only your sanity, but also work productivity. As it turns out, not taking time off is as bad for your health as it is for the economy. Research shows that taking advantage of vacation leave benefits makes you a better worker. So feel good about having taken that vacation.

Getting back in the swing of things can be a little rough after a cruise or a week-long Netflix binge. It’s unlikely you’ll be able to jump right into action on your first day back at the office. Mentally, you’re still in vacation-mode, and forcing it will only make it harder. Take these baby steps toward becoming a productive member of society again.


Ease Into It

It’s best to give yourself a day or two to mentally get back in work mode. If you’re not quite ready to get back to work when you’ve been out of town, take an extra day off when you’re back home to readjust. When you get back to work, ease into your daily tasks: do some easy things the first day or two, if possible, so you don’t get burnt out on work when you’ve just returned. Even if you’re anxious and excited to get working after a few days out of the office, it’s best not to rush it.


Avoid the Urge to Multitask

We all have to do it, or we’d never get enough done. But multitasking puts stress on the brain, and can quickly undo all the relaxing you did on your vacation. When you get back from vacation, you’ll have hundreds of unread e-mails, piles of paper on your desk, and tasks and phone calls to catch up on. The best approach might seem to be attacking everything at once. However, this will backfire and leave you wishing you had another vacation coming up. Do one thing at a time so you can regain your focus and set priorities. The week you get back, set up your weekly schedule so that you spread your work throughout the week. One long to-do list is daunting, but a day-by-day schedule of doable assignments has a brighter outlook.


Remember Your Routine

After a week or two away from work, the things you knew off the top of your head will be buried under the memories of your time off. But don’t worry – you’ll remember your login passwords and client’s names soon enough. Before your vacation, you had a routine, a specific way you did things that made your work day easier. Work toward getting back into that groove. You also had a complementary routine before and after work. Maybe you went to the gym in the morning and on Friday went out for happy hour with your coworkers. Whatever you regularly did, at work, at home, and around town, find that place again and it will help you feel more receptive to being back from vacation.


Appreciate the Time Off

Just because you’re being productive and taking orders doesn’t mean you can’t relish in the experiences you had on your vacation. Take time to be grateful that you were able to take the time off. If you took lots of photos, share them with your colleagues. Tell stories about the interesting people you met. Read more about the places that you traveled. There are ways that you can extend your vacation mentally without sacrificing productivity. Little reminders of the privilege of being able to travel can make you that much more appreciative of your job, which makes it possible.

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Posted by Agnes Jozwiak

Agnes is the Brand & Communication Director at ClickMeeting.

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