Beat the Post-Vacation Blues! » Mind Tools Blog

Beat the Post-Vacation Blues!

September 29, 2015


One of the cruel, undeniable facts about time is that it crawls along painfully slowly when you are engaged in an uninspiring task, but absolutely whizzes past the second you leave the office for your vacation!

You can spend the long winter months dreaming of a sizzling summer break, imagining you’re holding an ice-cold mojito on a sun-kissed beach, rather than clutching a steaming mug of coffee at your desk – yet once you’re at that beach, it feels as if your flight home is being called before the first ice cube has melted.

Happily, most of us are able to switch off from work and enjoy our time away from workplace pressures. For a few blissful weeks, the highest priority item on our To-Do List is “top up tan!”

Some people really feel the post-vacation “blues,” so we asked you for your top tips on how to get back into “work mode” after a vacation, and we received some great replies. Thank you to everyone who contributed their ideas!

On Twitter, several of you likened going back to work to going back to school! @mindsightuk, said, “Approach Fall with the excitement of a new school year. Learn something new.” And @LJMCnsltgGrp was definitely put in mind of happy school days, saying, “Meet someone new. And buy new pens! haha same as at school. Buy a fancy new pen and beautiful note book. Works every time!”

A quick catch up with team members is all @moralesonline needs before rejoining the workplace fray. He said, “First greet your subordinates, pulse check with them about any changes in the company, then check your emails and you are on.” @MeMyselfandIBS reckoned eyeing a new challenge is a good post-vacation tactic. He said, “My top tip would be to give yourself a goal for the new year, an incentive to work towards.”

Vacation? What vacation? @Sagonus has either a very strong work ethic, or a very unsympathetic bank manager! She said, “I don’t take holidays, I just take mojitos #freelancer.”

The team here at Mind Tools offered up some excellent tips for easing your way back into the ebb and flow of the workplace.

Editor Charlie Swift suggested being properly prepared beforehand, and bringing a little vacation reminder to work. He said: “Get your work clothes and bag ready the night before your first morning back, even if you’ve only just landed! Saves a lot of panic and starting off late the next morning. Make yourself snacks to take to work that will remind you of your holiday – a pot of olives, some exotic fruit… anything to help you linger a little longer.”

Community team leader @Yolande_MT is the embodiment of efficiency and preparation! She said, “I sort out my wardrobe. I hang work clothes on one side (sorted by color). I sew on buttons etc. and see that everything is in perfect condition. I know that it helps take care of the daily ‘what to wear’ headache. Don’t try to deal with all the ‘urgent’ stuff immediately. Prioritize and do them one by one – I get more done that way and I don’t feel overwhelmed immediately.”

Editor Sarah Pavey reckons the best way to keep that post-vacation energy is to plan the next one!  She said, “I quite like starting to think about my next holiday and booking up nice things in my calendar so I’ve got things to look forward to!”

Do you have any other tips for getting back into “work mode?” Share them with us in the comment box, below.

5 thoughts on “Beat the Post-Vacation Blues!

  1. Jocelyne wrote:

    I took a beautiful picture of the infinity pool at 8 am in the Dominican Republic last May with nobody around and I use it as my screen saver. It is very relaxing and it is my incentive to do good work and go back…

    1. btucker wrote:

      That creates some beautiful imagery, and I’m sure it lets you relax when you’re feeling stressed too?

  2. Mary wrote:

    Yes, I do have some tips for getting back into “work mode” after a vacation. How do I do it? I share my photos by sending a link to my photos to friends, family and co-workers after I get back. This gives me the opportunity to discuss my vacation or trip with people usually the full week after I’m back to work.

    1. btucker wrote:

      That sounds like a great transitioning tool.

    2. V wrote:

      I found myself doing that, and feeling depressed that I wasn’t still on vacation.

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