Dreading Going Back to Work? Here’s How to Look Forward to it.


Let’s face it, even if we love our job, the thought of the first day/week back at work after the Christmas and New Year break can feel pretty crappy. I’ve been doing one or two things, which I feel are making that first week back seem bearable and I’m actually starting to look forward to it. I’ve listed these things below to help you look forward to going back to work too.

1) Buy a new work outfit

I bought a lovely new work skirt and top in the Ted Baker sale yesterday. I can’t wait to wear this new outfit on my first day back in the office. Buy something new that you feel great in and can’t wait to wear. Get a haircut, paint your nails, buy some new make up…anything to make that first day feel special in some way.

2) Exercise

Make sure you ramp up your exercise again after probably not doing much over the Christmas break. I hadn’t done any for over a week, making me feel tired and irritable, but now I feel great after a few days of Pilates and a 2.5 hour bike ride today. Exercise lifts your mood, makes you feel more confident, and strengthens your ability to cope with challenging situations. Therefore, make sure you do at least 30 minutes a day in the days leading up to your first day back so you’re fighting fit and at your strongest emotionally.

3) Make plans

Book something fun in for mid-week and for that first weekend. This will give you something to look forward to e.g. dinner/drinks with friends, cinema, theatre etc.

4) Re-connect with colleagues

Think of someone you’d like to catch up with when you’re both back at work. Ask them if they’d like to go for lunch on your first or second day back. It’s good to chat to people and re-establish your relationships at work; just helps you gain a sense of belonging and connection to your workplace.

5) Set career goals for 2014

Think about what you’d like to achieve in the first 6 months back at work. You might find this previous blog post useful in doing that by reviewing your 2013 and then previewing your 2014. Get these goals straight in your mind to help focus your mind when you return to work.

Hope that helps. Wishing you all the best for 2014!

Alice Stapleton

About Alice

Alice coaches those who want to change career but don’t know what they want to do instead. She offers Career Coaching designed to help graduates, early to mid-level career-changers, and parents returning to work gain a clear vision of what career is right for them, and how to achieve it. She is also an accredited Coach Supervisor, and host of The Career Change Diaries podcast.