Go on vacation with peace of mind: Our 6 tips

The vacation countdown has been on for days. The moment you have been avidly waiting for all year is finally here. Your chance to take some time to just unwind. However, there is some organizing to do before you get to take this break from work.

That way you can leave on vacation with peace of mind and return with a recharged battery.

Go, yes!... But go worry-free

Before proudly donning your vacation hat, consider how to properly plan your time away from the office. You won’t be able to finish every single thing before D-day (or V-day!). Your projects won’t follow you out the door and your workload won’t finish itself. It’s true that some work will sit on your desk during your absence.

How to pack up with peace of mind? These six tips would certainly be a good place to start.

1. Take stock

This will undoubtedly end up helping you the most before leaving: taking stock.

Review all your projects: Incomplete requests? Important work in progress? One point to stress: do not leave any urgent file unfinished. Your mind will wander back to it throughout your time off, which is the last thing you want. For that reason, wrap up – as much as you possibly can – what has to be done before your vacation. This is essential! Put together a list of duties to complete before you leave. By the way, about that…

2. Make a list (or several!)

A list, what an efficient way to organize! Make a list of your priorities, things to remember, people to contact, etc. In short, a must-have in order to leave nothing to chance. Why not put down in writing what you have to do before you leave and what you will have to do when you get back? This will save time so that you won’t forget anything on your first day back. Notify those who will be affected by your absence.

3. Notify your superiors, colleagues and anyone likely to contact you

You’ve already pretty much planned your departure: you’ve taken stock, lists are done. You can now remind your immediate superiors, colleagues and anyone who may try to reach you during your vacation. Set up your out-of-office messages (email, voicemail). It is a good way to advise people about your vacation dates. As the saying goes, prevention is better than cure! Take this opportunity to delegate what you have run out of time to do.

4. Delegate

Your colleagues will hopefully not be too jealous of your vacation and will graciously take the reins during your absence. You’ll return the favour when they take their own vacation. Now is the right moment to dip into that reserve of team spirit! Check your lists and identify what you could delegate. And while we’re at it… is a little order on the menu?

5. Tidy up

If you leave a messy desk, you’ll come back to a messy desk. Think about it! Sorting your files and emails or even tidying up your workspace could potentially make both your departure and back-to-work go a little more seamless. After all, the goal is to give yourself some breathing room.

6. Breathe!

And we’re off! Now is the time to go on vacation with peace of mind and fully take advantage of the break. The five previous tips will undoubtedly help you better prepare and better manage your time away from the office. During your vacation, think about everything but your projects, lists, colleagues… your job, period. Unwind. Deep breaths! And smile as you enjoy your much deserved break.

Return to work, of course!... But return recharged

Since you’ve made all the arrangements (and are so well organized!), you should be able to pick up right where you left off at work without too much trouble. And word to the wise, don’t try to be the most productive person on your first day back. Plan to spend the morning, for example, going through emails and prioritizing your requests. Make sure to schedule enough time for follow-up. Set realistic expectations and give yourself time to ease back into the saddle. It’s worth it to be kind to yourself.

Have a great vacation!