5 keys to getting back to work after vacation

One day it’s piña coladas on a white-sand beach; the next day it’s a three-hour meeting, and you have a budget to present. Don’t kill your vacation buzz. Try these steps.

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Getting back into the swing of things after time off is never easy, but there are ways you can make the transition smooth and painless:

1. Give yourself an extra day.

Though most people want to use every last minute of their vacation time on the trip itself, it’s better to give yourself a day or so at home after your sojourn to get your head back in the game.

Rather than coming home Sunday night and going straight to work Monday morning, consider taking an extra day off or getting a Sunday morning flight so there’s no big rush once you get home.

Giving yourself time to unpack, unwind and recover from jet lag will help you return to work fresh and prepared.

2. Plan your return.

Before we go on vacation, most of us make sure that everything is organized and sorted for when we leave—tasks completed, handoffs passed along and out-of-office replies turned on—but what about when we get back?

Make sure you keep your first day back free to catch up on everything you’ve missed. Avoid booking meetings for that day, as they will disrupt your transition and keep you from getting back on top of things.

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