Over the last month, the sun was (somewhat) shining, the board games were out,  and the only worry you had was whose turn it was to clean out the BBQ… But this week, it’s tongs down and laptops open because we’re back at work baby!  

We get it, you’re feeling unprepared and apprehensive, and you’re not alone – that’s the pesky back-to-work blues kicking in. But don’t worry, we’re here to give you the best tips and tricks to get back into the flow while keeping up that refreshed holiday feeling.  

What can I do to switch out of vacation mode and into work mode? 

Don’t let that first day sneak up on you! We recommend slowly getting back into a routine, this means setting alarms, eating your meals on schedule and potentially holding back on those mid-morning mimosas. Grocery shopping and laundry may seem like a chore but let’s face it, you’ve got to do it at some point, why not save yourself some stress and get it done before you’re bogged done with an 8-hour workday! 

I’m anxious about the workload I’m coming back to, how do I deal with the stress? 

We’ve all been there, the dreaded inbox you’re tempted to check the night before you’re back. Well, stop right there, checking it will only lead you to lay awake all night writing up replies in your head, the inbox is going to be there in the morning, and you’ll be well-rested and rearing to go.  

Be sure to text your workmates and organise a lunch or aim to play a quick 9 holes on your break. Not only will you give your mind something else to focus on but you’re setting yourself up for a great first say at work! 

How should I tackle my first day back at work? 

We’ve already talked about not checking your emails the night before, well, now we’re saying DO NOT check them first thing. Instead, you’re heading right in to book more time off, that’s right, MORE time off! It can be a week in months to come or an extended weekend in the very near future, either way having something to look forward to will invigorate you and elevate your work week.

Once your time off is booked, give yourself a chance to catch up with the team, tidy up your desk, and make yourself a coffee, then and only then do you open your email list. Start by prioritising which emails need attending to first, which can wait till the next week, and which ones can be forgotten altogether. It’s time to be brutal with the delete button, if it seems like a waste of your time then it probably is. Do the same for any other jobs you have, you know what’s most important! 

The most productive among us will turn off their ‘Out-of-Office’ automatic response first thing, and if you fall into that group, fantastic! But for those that sit in the slightly less productive (or slightly more realistic) camp, leave your ‘Out-of-Office’ responses on for the first few days back, this allows you a little more time to strategise and plan out your week. 

Don’t put pressure on yourself to get too much done, take it step-by-step and you’ll get into the swing of things eventually.  

I can’t help but get FOMO from everyone who’s still out enjoying the sunshine! 

Take advantage of the long days and light evenings by going for a swim or a picnic in the park after work. Plan some mid-week lunches with colleagues or a weekend on the coast with your pals. Summer doesn’t have to stop just because you’re at work!  

And remember, making sure you have a positive work/life balance is something you should prioritise all through the year, not just in the summer months. 

Here’s hoping we all survive the back-to-work blues, however, if you’re finding your gloomy mood is owed less to a deep longing for the sunny outdoors and more to dissatisfaction in your career and workplace, then maybe it’s time to reach out to the team at Grada to find out your next step.

Happy New Year from the team at Grada.