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Celebrating Christmas and ringing in the New Year are time-honored traditions that most people partake in and thoroughly enjoy. But all good things must come to an end, and Christmas and New Year celebrations with friends and family are no exception. After spending time with friends and family, the fact that we have responsibilities eventually creeps back into our psyche to make sure we don’t forget to return to “normal life.” While the return to “normal life” might look a little different from one person to the next, the resumption of a regular 9 to 5 work schedule is almost always part of the equation.

Getting Back on Track After the Holidays Without Feeling Stressed Out or Overwhelmed

While getting back into the proverbial swing of things at work can be challenging, there are plenty of things you can do to make the process feel at least a little less overwhelming.  Some of the ones frequently recommended by most certified professional life coaches include the following:

Getting a Handle on Your To-Dos

Resolving to-dos can be easy if you go about it the right way. To take on this particular task, you can start by writing out a list of the most pressing tasks and tackling those first.  From there, following that same logic, you should complete the remainder of your to-dos until you’re all caught up.

Taming Your Inbox

Similar to to-dos, your inbox can get filled with emails while you’re enjoying time away from work, and they certainly won’t be answering themselves in your absence. They, too, will be waiting for you when you return to the office. Fortunately, taming an unwieldy inbox is not too difficult. Studies show that sorting and placing emails into the following temporary folders makes the task of replying to an inbox full of emails a whole lot more manageable:

  • Deletable
  • Immediate response needed
  • Reply needed by the end of the week

Categorizing your emails in this way will make your inbox less cluttered and may even provide you with a sense of clarity.

Handling Upcoming Meetings

Spending time in meetings will likely be on the agenda the moment you step foot back in the office, but some are probably not as urgent as others.  That being said, consider taking a moment to look at your calendar and postponing any meetings that can wait, which will give you a little more time to regain your bearings and further catch up on unread emails and unresolved to-dos.

Bottom Line

In summary, the first week or so back in the office after spending time with friends and family over the holidays will probably be the busiest. But with enough planning, however, it shouldn’t take too long to get back on track.