Hi, everyone! I’m back from a week of beach vacation at an all-inclusive resort in Kemer, Antalya, and I’m positively exhausted. Knackered. Shattered. And the rest of the thesaurus.
Unfortunately, I’m one of those people who needs another vacation to offset the effects of the previous vacation. I had a lot of fun being very active, and now my body is paying the price. So this second “vacation” is basically sleeping off the effects of the first one.
But being a freelance writer means when I don’t work, I don’t make any money, so I have to get back to work ASAP. And it was even more so this time because I had a deadline for the second day of my return.
I’m also planning mini getaways before the summer ends, as well as a couple of days abroad. And fingers crossed, a second beach vacation because I need all the Vitamin D and happiness I can get as someone with a weak immune system, and as a writer who sometimes gets so lost in her stories that she forgets things like the outside world, healthy-eating, and exercise.
But this post is coming to you right after I’ve submitted my piece a day before the deadline and feeling slightly better. So I wanted to share my tips with fellow freelancers who freak about their vacations because of the mountain of work that awaits them afterward.
11 Tips for How to Get Back to Work After Vacation (Even If You are Exhausted):
1) Sleep well and long.
Here’s the thing. I’m not rich. I can afford vacations at five-star resorts through a carefully calculated budget, and watching out for discounts.
So when something you love – aka beach holidays- happens once or twice a year, you make the most of it. This usually comes in the form of overdoing things like swimming, dancing, eating, drinking; and underdoing things like sleeping.
After a week of fun and an exhausting return trip, you need your sleep. So do it. Even if it means it is 5 pm by the time you properly wake up. Your body and mind will thank you for it.
2) Eat healthily, even if you have to commit a few “sins” until you get the energy to concoct something nutritious.
In my case, I ate chocolate before I could move my butt to heat and eat vegetables.
3) Have a nice and long shower, or bath.
You’ll feel refreshed and energized.
4) Take a painkiller with minimal side effects if you are in physical pain.
If everything hurts badly and it hasn’t waned a bit even after the sleep, bath and meal, you might need a painkiller. Of course, this is between you, your common sense and doctor. But if you pushed your body like you never do in a year, taking something might be in order. (But please don’t do anything your doctor doesn’t approve of. I’m not a doctor.)
5) Drink coffee! (Or tea, if that’s your thing.)
After I do all four, I still need my good friend and preferred medicine, coffee. (This time I also watched the two Jim Jefferies Show episodes I missed for relaxation and laughs before getting to work.)
The following tips require you do them before your trip so that the five tips above will be more effective.
6) Stock your fridge (and freezer) with food and beverages that won’t go bad.
So that you won’t have to run to the shops when you’d rather not leave your house. Or your bed.
7) Try not to get a deadline for the first couple of days you are back.
Sometimes it is inevitable, but it is wise to give yourself a breather. In my case, I had already written and edited the essay that was due. I re-read it for flow, overlooked language mistakes, and connectivity. It wasn’t that much work as I had done the heavy lifting earlier.
8) To continue from tip 7, if you must have a deadline soon after your return, do the work before you leave.
So that when you come back, you just have to do minor edits and hit send.
9) Don’t leave your house a mess.
I find it impossible to not to leave the house at least a bit messy while packing. But this time, I managed to leave a relatively tidy place behind, as well as a desk ready to be worked at. I am now more relaxed and motivated to get to work.
10) And try to pick projects that not only pay well, but you care about and enjoy.
Whether it is your internal harsh critic or the editor you are working with, (and it is generally both), a piece can often take longer than you thought it
would. It wouldn’t do anyone any good if you resent yourself, the piece or the topic. So pick something you are passionate about whenever you can.
Writing the essay was scary and emotional, but ultimately, I love the subject. People need to read it, and I want it to be its best version.
It’s hard producing your best work if you are cursing the moment you decided to take on this work.
11) Enjoy the hell out of your vacation!
A great vacation makes you ecstatic and fills your head with awesome story ideas. So arrange for your work to be done before your vacation starts. Have a solid plan on what you will do afterward, but don’t worry about it as you relax with your favorite cocktail.
Do you have any other suggestions on how to get back to work after an exhausting vacation? Please share in the comments.