Whether you spent a couple of days abroad, at a cosy local hotel or just spent some time off at home, getting back to work might feel impossible. You might even feel like you need another holiday to get over the one you just experienced.
In most (possibly all) cases, you return thinking you'll be all fueled up and ready to tackle new projects. Instead, you'll find yourself racing against time, trying to get through a long list of unopened emails that have accumulated while you were away, as well as catching up on new projects, which can be very overwhelming.
The best way to maintain your sanity upon your return is to prepare beforehand and organise your work when you're back.
To help you deal with your post-holiday workload, we've compiled a list of our top tips.
Ease back into your routine
For this to happen, you need to prepare a day or two before going back to work.
Get used to waking up early again, prepare your lunch and clothes the night before, and ensure that you have an excellent breakfast to face the day.
Try arriving slightly earlier at the office to get a head-start on your to-do list and get going when it's still reasonably quiet.
Keeping your calendar free for the first two days or so will give you time to catch up on work and emails. Don't schedule meetings on your first day back if you're not up to speed with what's going on - unless, of course, it's a 'catch-up' meeting.
Ask for an update
Before taking time off, it's a good idea to give a hand-over of your ongoing projects to a trusted colleague who can take over while you're away.
Set a meeting with them to discuss all the necessary details, and add reminders on their calendar to make sure deadlines are met.
Once you're back, set another meeting with this colleague to get updates on your projects and proceed to plan what you need to work on next.
Make a list and prioritise
Before leaving on holiday, you should have written a list of all the projects and tasks you need to complete in order of priority, categorising what is urgent and needs to be done as soon as possible, and what can wait until the following week.
It will help you work faster if you also include the current status of each project to monitor whether things are up to speed while also planning the next step forward.
You can also break down big, overwhelming projects into smaller, manageable tasks to feel more organised and make tasks feel less overwhelming.
Reconnecting with the people you work with is an excellent way of helping you feel motivated and happy to be back. It is also a great way of getting a necessary update on what's been going on.
Going out for a coffee during your lunch break and catching up with a colleague can also help you have something to look forward to.
Get rid of distractions
Although it might be tempting to check your social media, check the news and message your friends on your first day back at work, getting distracted with anything unrelated to work will make it difficult to focus your attention and get things done.
Instead, make the most of your precious time at work by muting your phone to concentrate fully on the task at hand and try to schedule a short break in your day to help you recharge and increase your focus.
You can also use anti-distraction applications such as Forest and Freedom.
Ultimately, the best trick to beating the post-holiday blues is to power through your first few days back at work.
Ignore distractions, work on your most urgent tasks, tick things off your to-do list to help you feel motivated and accomplished, and remember why you love your job.