How to Recover From a Week Long Vacation

Vacation mode: You just spent an entire week in sunny Mexico. Every morning you woke up with no alarm clock, made your way slowly out to enjoy a nice leisurely breakfast, grabbed a book and spent hours reading on the beach with waves crashing in the background, and ended the nights dancing your heart away with your best friends by the cabana.

….Now fast forward one week…

You’re on your flight home and go into shock. It’s Sunday and you have work tomorrow. You need to do about three loads of laundry, have absolutely no food left in your house, and just checked your email for the first time and see you have 7 million unread emails (alright, we might be exaggerating a little).

But wait, slow down!!!

Vacation is meant for complete rest, relaxation, and a moment to escape from your regular routine, but coming back from vacation sometimes leaves you more stressed out than you were before you left. With so much to unpack, a heavy duty grocery trip on your mind from coming home to an unstocked kitchen, and getting back to a regular routine after a week with no to-do lists, our minds can go a little crazy.

Instead of ditching your rested and relaxed self at the onset of a sudden reality check, it’s important to take a second and realize everything WILL get done. Here are some tips and tricks for making your transition from palm trees, pools, and drinks with cute umbrellas back to the normal day to day routine…

1.) Take it slow

First and foremost, take it slow. It’s easy to get overwhelmed when you start thinking of a week’s worth of to-do’s. Try not to get too ahead of yourself and don’t start making lists until you actually arrive home. You’re technically still on vacation while you’re in the air or in the car so use this time to breathe and reminisce about the amazing trip you just experienced.Fs

2.) Set up an out of office email and voicemail message

To prevent getting overwhelmed from the 7 million unread emails over the past week, set up an out of office email and voicemail prior to leaving for your trip that states the dates you’ll be gone. This way, the people trying to reach you will know you’re out of the office and if they really need to get ahold of you, they can do so when you’re back in the office.

3.) Give yourself a full day to adjust

If possible, try to make the day after you arrive home a buffer day. This means no work, no plans, and a full day to dedicate getting back in the swing of things. If you’re arriving late Sunday night and have work Monday morning, chances are you’ll feel stressed out, tired, and unorganized come Monday morning. But, if you arrive home on Saturday and have all of Sunday to get yourself adjusted, then Monday morning will be a breeze.

4.) Make a to-do list

Making to-do lists can help you prioritize the important tasks that need to get done. It’s shown that having a written plan of action increases productivity. Make a list of everything you need to do including unpacking, laundry, grocery shopping, and don’t forget to include prioritizing time for yourself! Then, rank the order of importance of each task and go about your to-do’s in that order. You’ll feel so much more productive when you can check off tasks in an orderly fashion.

5.) Don’t come home to a completely empty kitchen

Instead of coming home to an entirely empty kitchen, try leaving a few items that won’t go bad while you’re away. This way when you arrive home and too exhausted to grocery shop right away, you’ll have a couple items on hand to throw together a quick meal. You can freeze a fresh loaf of bread before you go and keep almond butter in the pantry to throw together a quick sandwich or keep frozen fruits, frozen veggies, and unopened almond milk to blend a nourishing post travel smoothie!

6.) Stay in vacation mode as long as possible

Just because you’re not on vacation anymore doesn’t mean you can’t stay in somewhat of a vacation mode. If you had a delicious lunch everyday, treat yourself to a yummy lunch spot you’ve been wanting to try near the office. Or if you enjoyed reading by the ocean, end your nights with a good book (maybe put on some soothing ocean sounds in the background to enhance the effect!).

7.) Sleep and stay healthy

Even if you feel like you have a million tasks to get done, don’t neglect rest as soon as you get home! Travelling can take a toll on your body so it’s especially important you sleep well, eat well, and take care of yourself so you don’t end up getting sick when you’re adjusting back to your normal routine.

Just because you’re no longer spending your days soaking up the sun without a worry in the world, doesn’t mean you have to erase it all when reality strikes. Just remember to take a moment, breathe, and remind yourself everything will get done!

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