Preparing to head back to work and worried about how you will fit back into the 9-5 pattern after living a ‘free and easy’ routine?
Here are some tips to help with planning your week (and playtime!) that will help to reduce the overwhelm. This may also be helpful for the young people in your life as they try to adjust to ‘the new norm’ at school or college, so feel free to share!
1. Set a morning affirmation – setting your intention for the day can help you to focus on the most pressing item on the agenda. Think about what you want to get out of today, or what you want to have achieved by the time you get into bed tonight.
2. Take a proper lunch break – if you have a lot to catch up on, or are raring to get back in the saddle, you may be tempted to get stuck in but you will end up feeling overwhelmed or burned out. Taking a break to get some fresh air and proper sustenance can help to keep you productive throughout the day.
3. Get outdoors and try some form of exercise to get the endorphins going. Taking time to clear the mind and get the body moving can help to reduce stress, and it can also be good thinking time if you need to mull over a few ideas.
4. Switch off properly – as you start to wind down at the end of the day, try to attend to one thing at a time, don’t scroll and watch, and put your phone on charge in another room so you don’t get distracted (disclaimer: I need to take my own advice on this one, as I use my phone for an alarm clock!!)
5. Connect – keep up with the really important things and goings-on and try not to dwell on the negative news or gossip. Consider taking a social media break at least one day a week or even a weekend.
6. Plan your escape – when things are getting hectic, try to have things to look forward to for the weekends or time off – even just a day out can lift your spirits, or try some holiday dreaming. Sometimes the planning can be just as rewarding.
7. Plan your escape Part II – if you are really not enjoying being back and feel ready for a more significant change, make a plan of things that will stretch or challenge you. Maybe investigate some new courses or career change ideas, or perhaps a new fitness routine. Even taking small action steps can help to make you feel more positive.
8. Eat well to feel well – Get yourself organised by writing up a weekly meal plan so that you know in advance what you will have, and think about meals that you could batch cook for lunches and dinners over a number of days. It will help to keep you on track if you are feeling tired when you get home and can’t muster the energy to cook.
9. Get ready the night before – anyone else rather have an extra 15 mins on snooze? Me too! Spend a few minutes before bed to get the breakfast stuff out, your bag ready to go, and get your clothes laid out. Saves that last minute faff in the morning!
10. Plan your playlist – set up a playlist of some of your favourite top tunes that are guaranteed to get you out of a lull if you’re feeling a bit bleary eyed…and you can even indulge your guilty pleasures (I won’t tell!!)
Photo credit: Estee Janssens via Unsplash