It’s officially my last day of winter vacation. Tomorrow, I’ll be back in the lab bright and early, ready to start the spring semester, albeit about two weeks early. There’s definitely a bittersweet quality to saying goodbye to unscheduled days and afternoon naps. I’m particularly going to miss waking up and having my husband home and drinking our coffee together without needing to be anywhere. Even though there is a part of me that is looking forward to being back to my projects, the pace inevitably quickens, and I’m left longing for the lazy days of early January.
One of the most difficult things about adjusting to being back from vacation is placing unrealistic explanations on my work performance. I’m usually brimming with ideas for whenever I start work but lack some of the energy to follow through. Starting a new season of work with an overflowing to-do list is really not the best use of my time, as it’s very unlikely that in a few days I could tackle every single thing. Reminding myself of this fact, and lowering my expectations to a more reasonable and achievable level is the key to a successful transition back to work.
What I am looking forward is to slowly easing into the rhythm of the New Year, and to do that I’ve slowly been getting on track to my everyday (not vacation mode) self. Getting back to my healthy routine has been a huge part of being ready for work. I still haven’t hit the gym as of 2018 but have spent time walking around my neighborhood with my dogs and doing yoga in my living room. Even more rewarding has been spending time journaling and reading, particularly the kind of books that motivate me for the New Year, like What the Most Successful People do Before Breakfast.
With the right mindset, the transition back to work doesn’t have to be fraught with stress and anxiety, and that’s what I’m hoping for tomorrow. Wish me luck!