Tuesday, June 30, 2015  02:43 PM | By: Matt Dow
Preparing for Vacation: Leave Your Worries at the Office

After countless hours of trying to stay fit at work and planning your itinerary, you are finally ready to go on vacation! While many people set up an out of office e-mail before their vacation, the American Psychological Association reports that approximately half of all office workers in the United States still check their e-mail daily while away. The steps below can help you and your co-workers prevent stress that comes before or after someone takes a vacation and can help you un-plug.

Before Your Trip

Before Vacation 

Organize Your Tasks

One of the most important steps is figuring out what tasks must be completed before heading on your vacation. This should be broken down into three simple steps:

  1. Time-sensitive work
  2. Projects requiring feedback
  3. Long-term projects

The first thing that needs your attention is any work that is due immediately after your trip. It will most likely take you a few days to get back to your normal routine.

Your next step is to work on projects that you or someone else will need to provide feedback on.  Setting a deadline for projects can help you take care of important things before vacation.

Long-term projects can wait until after you come back, and can be dealt with once you return to the office.

Keep Your Co-Workers In Mind

If you have a set date for your vacation, make sure that it does not overlap with someone else in your department. Also, consult your co-workers to check their workload before you have them take on questions regarding your work.

During Your Vacation

During your Vacation

Stop Checking Your E-Mail Every Ten Minutes!

Your vacation time is supposed to be for you to enjoy, not for you to be on calls and in remote meetings! A good tip is to check your e-mail every other day for about 15 minutes. Just enough time to get up a little early and check-in while you have some downtime or are getting ready for your day.   

Take Advantage of Free Wi-Fi

Although Wi-Fi is one of the most sought after amenities by guests, there are still many hotels that charge extra for you to connect. If you are stuck in a hotel that does not offer free Wi-Fi, try to ask someone where the nearest coffee shop or public library is, and take advantage of their Wi-Fi. This will also help you become more disciplined in setting aside a specific time to catch up on e-mails and follow up with people.

When You Return

When You Return

Give Yourself A Day Off

Ideally, you should plan a trip that gives you at least one day to rest before going back into the office. If you are crossing time zones, you will likely have jet lag. Even if you’re not, you will need to re-stock your refrigerator and do some laundry.

Meet With Your Boss & Co-Workers

When you return to work after your relaxing trip, you may feel overwhelmed with the amount of voicemails or e-mails you have received. Meet with your boss and other co-workers to help reprioritize your tasks and figure out what is new with each of your projects.