There will be many things awaiting you on your first day back:
A full inbox
A long list of to-dos
Staff and customers needing your attention
image courtesy of mobile-cuisine.com
If you dive right in to your work, you're likely to wipe out all the benefits of taking time off! Instead, get back into the swing of things while maintaining some of the calm and restoration of your time away.
Block off your morning.
Make sure you don't have any meetings scheduled or big projects due. Then before you open your inbox, pause and think about your work priorities. As you make your way through emails and voicemails, focus on returning the messages that are connected to what matters most. Defer or delegate things that aren't top priorities. And, remember it will probably take more than one day to get caught up, so be easy on yourself!
Recap Your Vacation.
Before you listen to that first voicemail, sit quietly for a minute, and think about what you most liked about yourself on vacation. Was it the relaxed way you listened to the people you were with? Maybe it was the time you allowed your mind to wander?
Plan For The New Year.
In order to get the right things done, we need a filter to help us decide what not to get done. Identify the most important things you want to focus on for the year.
Set Time Aside.
It's a good idea to block out your first morning back from vacation. This allows you to go through what's waiting for you. Don't just jump right in.
The Bottom Line
Remember that this doesn't just have to be your return from vacation plan. Learn to plan ahead, rely on your staff members, and understand that sometimes, it’s inevitable that you'll miss out on that last minute request, and you’ll be that much more productive when you return.