Here in the UK, many of us are coming off a long and unusually warm summer. With the children officially back at school, you may be overjoyed because you have more time to get organised and focus on work, or you may be frustrated as the roads are busy again with commuters.
For some people, it can be challenging to get on top of the workload after a long break. The first day back can be the hardest, with everything screaming for attention. One lady describes it as “feeling as though she has been hit by a bus” due to the amount of work and emails she had waiting for her.
Holidays are supposed to be a time to switch off from work and focus on your family and yourself, so you are energised and refreshed to return to work. However, we know that can be easier said than done. So we have pulled together tips for those struggling with the volume of work on their return. Whatever your situation, we believe you can reset and refocus with small baby steps for a successful last quarter.
How to regain focus and finish off the last quarter of the year:
1. Write down your priorities
Plan and write down priorities for the next day. This helps you to fall asleep faster rather than worrying about everything you have to do the next day. Once your preferences are written down, go to bed early and wake up with renewed energy and mental freshness.
2. Give your priorities context
You might find it helpful to write a brief note on why you think these things are priorities, as you might find yourself unable to remember when the heat is on. Writing the reasons will give you a frame of reference if you want to move them down the priorities list.
3. Create space for opportunities
Planning your time by time-boxing your priorities will help you stay focused and leave room for any eventualities that crop up. A colleague or team member might not be employing these strategies and might need some help from you.
4. Block ofF time for emails
Go through your emails and prioritise them by importance and the time needed to complete a task. Deal with the urgent ones first. Don’t just go through your emails as though they were logged in your inbox. Block off time to deal with the emails without any interruption.
5. Set healthy boundaries around sleep
Transitioning back into “work mode” requires healthy boundaries. Go to bed early and wake up organised for an easier transition back to work and reality so you don’t feel pressure on your return.
6. Hire help
You can’t do everything, so get help at home or work. Delegate any tasks that others can support you with.
7. End the day with a plan
It can be easy to find yourself rushing out of the office at the end of each workday but imagine setting aside 15-20mins to sort out any admin issues and write and update your priority list for the next day.
8. Plan a light workday right after your vacation
This will allow you to have time to reconnect with colleagues and exchange summer highlights. This is a great way to reestablish relationships and build rapport.
9. Write a note to yourself before vacation
A welcome message from your pre-vacation self will help you focus and tackle the right tasks on your return.
10. last but not least, be kind and give yourself some grace and time
This allows you to warm up and get back into your work rhythm. Even if you love your job, it can sometimes be hard to come back when you loved the time off. That is ok and perfectly human.
Create a system – it is easier to enjoy time off without regrets if you have a system that works. Your non-dated goal achiever planner will help you slip back into a powerful routine and create a system that allows you to achieve more by doing less.
What strategies have you employed to get reset and refocus?
UPCOMING MENTORING SESSION
Join us this month for a member’s mentoring session with Michelle Moore. Michelle is an award-winning leadership coach, author, speaker, and educator. During this session, Michelle will enlighten us on How to become a more conscious leader, Develop Your Voice And Stand Out In Your Field.