It’s common to feel like life sucks when you return home from a relaxing vacation, and not because you had too much to drink or spent too much money while you were away. Many people report feeling anxiety and even sadness when faced with the reality of their day-to-day jobs, experiencing dread when they think of the pile of work that’s waiting for them on their office desk.
The Huffington Post reports the research of Dr. Josh Klapow, an expert psychologist, who claims that it’s common for people to feel stress and disorientation when they return from their vacations, and that this fear and anxiety can prevent them from taking days off of work in the future. Studies prove that people are taking less vacations each year, with one report claiming that during 2016, 54 percent of Americans ended the year with unused vacation time.
This situation makes people think twice when it comes to taking a vacation, and adds negative side effects to those who do take their well deserved time off. Klapow believes that the problem doesn’t lie with the fact that work piles up while you’re away, but with the way in which we approach the act of having days off and how our brain unsuccessfully copes with this change of pace. Klapow believes that the best way to avoid post-vacation stress is to prepare, which is a process that starts before you travel.
Related Story: How Forest Fires Ruin Wine And What It Means For You
Before you leave, Klapow suggests taking care of the main tasks that’ll create stress for you in the future, while also completing a priority task list, which will help you get back to work once you come back from your vacation. It’s also very important to let people know that you won’t be working, so that they won’t pester you with emails, texts or phone calls. While on vacation, be sure to disable notifications, to get involved in new activities and to try to disconnect from your phone. If you can’t completely unplug, then be sure to create short periods of time where you’ll check emails and answer phone calls in the mornings and evenings.
When you return from your vacation, don’t stress and try to arrive a couple of days before you’re meant to jump back into your routine, so you can get acclimated. You can also let your coworkers and family know that you’ll need a couple of days to get back in top shape.