Ease Yourself into the New Work Year

Words: Jess Spiro

January is a bittersweet month. On the one hand, it’s a chance for a refresh, the beginning of a new year and the chance to add to your life story on a clean page. On the other, however, the new year marks the end of the festive season and along with that, holidays. It signifies the inevitable return to work and the recommencing of real life and even the most optimistic person can feel a little blue at the thought of that. So, here are our tips for making your return to work and being a responsible a little easier.

Give yourself some breathing room

Sure, it’s the beginning of year and you have lots to do. You don’t, however, have to get every task done in the first week. When you get back to the office, don’t immediately launch into a task. Make yourself a cup of tea (or coffee provided it doesn’t send your anxiety into overdrive) and gather your thoughts before answering any emails. Have a small chat with your co-workers to gently reset your mind to office mode. Throwing yourself into your to-do list may be a great way of getting going, but it can lead you to feel a little overwhelmed and overworked very quickly. Stop to smell the roses and you’ll find yourself feeling strong and encouraged to get started on your work.

Write a list, then invert it

Lists are a great way of keeping yourself organised and focused. Before each week, write a list of all the tasks you need to get done. If you’re anything like the average person, you’ll write your list according to how much you like something. Your easier, favoured tasks will most likely be towards the top of the list and the things you’re dreading will probably be towards the bottom. Simply, write out your list as you would normally and come Monday morning, invert it. Make yourself get tasks you would normally postpone out of the way, not only will you feel more productive but you’ll also have the rest of the week to complete tasks you actually like.

Don’t pressure yourself

In 2017, instead of adopting the ‘new year, new me’ ideology, try for the ‘new year, sane me’ one. While it’s always good to change your eating and exercise habits, this doesn’t necessarily mean that you need to start a new diet and exercise regime both on the first day of work. Give yourself a chance to re-establish some kind of routine and then work the exercise and healthy eating into that. Trying to manage too many new things during an already stressful time is a recipe for disaster, so give yourself a week and then shake things up.

Show yourself some love and care

No matter how much you love your job (and we really hope you do!), you’re only human if you’re a little sad when your holiday is over and it’s time to go back to the office. Wake up slightly earlier than normal so you can show yourself some love before the madness of your day begins. It can be as simple as making a cup of tea before hopping in the shower or even packing an extra special lunch for yourself. Be kind to yourself, you have the rest of the year to be strict so eat that pasta for dinner (or lunch), have that glass of wine. Allow yourself to ease into your first couple of weeks so that you don’t burn out before February.

Buy new office supplies

Honestly, who doesn’t love the smell of a new diary or notepad? Treat your desk to a facelift, with fun and fancy new stationery. You’ll be dying to get to work when you know you’ll get to show off your new pens.

Plan an end of day treat

Following on from the idea of self care, treat yourself to something at the end of the day to congratulate yourself for getting through it. It can be something as small as getting into your pj’s the second you get home (a personal favourite of ours) or allowing yourself an extra scoop of ice cream. The point here is not to be overindulgent, but simply do something to make yourself a little more cheerful at the end of the day. It will make getting through the work day, that much easier.

Treat yourself with these simple, yet comforting, mid week meals.

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