Productivity Tips: The Vacation Edition
Sometimes just the thought of going on vacation can send our overachieving, overly stressed minds into a full-blown tizzy. But studies show that taking time off and going on vacations can make us more productive and boost creativity.
So how do you avoid feeling so stressed out before and after your trip, essentially undoing all of the blissed-out relaxing vibes you are hoping to benefit from?
Listen up, I have a few tips for you on how to be productive before and after your next vacation and remove (or at least reduce) those feelings of overwhelm.
BEFORE YOUR TRIP
Complete any lingering tasks that may fill your brain on your trip, like scheduling a doctor's appointment, responding to a client proposal, or getting your inbox down to zero.
Get ahead on your daily tasks and schedule them. For example, do you post on Instagram every day for your business? Before you leave on your trip, plan one week's worth of extra captions and imagery. You can always swap fresh photos in from your trip, but at least the copywriting is done. Same goes for other tasks you may do regularly, like newsletters and Facebook posts.
Make a list of the three priority tasks you need to get done when you return. Create the list in the notes section of your phone and add to it as things come to you, but don't fill the list with small tasks. This is a big-picture list so that you'll be focused and know exactly where to start when you return to work. For example, when I was in Italy I knew upon my return I would: 1. promote my matcha workshops, 2. finish a report for a client and 3. recruit a new publicist for my team. Knowing those were my tasks allowed me the mental freedom to hit pause for a week while eating bread and cheese.
Communicate your plans. Set up OOO responders on your emails, and if you rely on Instagram for communication, draft an auto-responder message that you can copy and paste into DMs as needed. Heck, announce an Insta detox if you want! Just make it clear when you'll be back.
DURING YOUR TRIP
If you must work during your trip, schedule a 30-minute or one-hour work session into your day. 💻⏰ I typically do this before or after breakfast, or in the late afternoon when I may usually find myself returning to the room to freshen up before dinner. Set a timer and stick to your time limit so you don't get sucked in!
AFTER YOUR TRIP
Set realistic expectations upon your return. Give yourself a day for jetlag and unpacking, or allow yourself a half-day to grocery shop and go to the gym. Sometimes the stress we feel post-vacay is self-induced because we think we need to hit the ground running, but that's a fast path to burnout.
2. Refer back to your top priority task list you made before the trip. It's easy to get swallowed up by an overflowing inbox or get dragged into a bunch of meetings, but if you keep your priority tasks top of mind, that will help reduce the feelings of overwhelm.
3. Breathe. Above all else, don't let work stress take away your post-vacay glow. Look back on a few pictures, smile and be grateful for the time away. Then dive back in with a fresh perspective that you can and you will get caught up in no time.
Let me know if these tips serve you well as you plan or recover from you next vacation, and drop me a comment below to let me know if you have any other tips that myself and others may find useful. Until then, happy vacation, and go easy on yourself. You deserve a break!
Do you want more productivity tips to last you beyond vacay recovery? I’ve got you covered with a FREE guide!