It’s been a while since you’ve hit that alarm clock, jumped in the shower, donned some professional clothing, and grabbed a fast breakfast before rushing out the door. Perhaps you need some motivation to get back into the routine after being laid off due to the COVID-19 shutdowns or working from home. Or, maybe you’ve taken some time off for another reason, and now it’s time to head back to the daily professional routine. It’s an adjustment that will require some patience as you transition back into the workplace.
It may be hard at first to pull away from a comfy at-home work environment, a beachside getaway vacation, or even spending time devoted to family matters, but you can do it. Prepare yourself for the routine by giving yourself a practice run-through ahead of time. Allow yourself some time to adjust by taking breaks when you need them, and be sure to keep work life and home life separate. Here are some helpful tips on how to go back to work after you’ve become accustomed to a break in routine.
Ease back into your routine of professional life. Before it’s time to head out the door for real, practice by setting your alarm earlier ahead of time. When it rings, resist hitting snooze. Get up, and go about your morning routine as you would if you were ready to head out the door for work. It sometimes takes a bit of retraining, but you did it before and can do it again.
It may surprise you, but if you’ve been working from home for a few weeks now, you’ve probably developed some newfound skills you didn’t know you had. Even if you haven’t been working, you’ve probably learned something new. Now that you will be moving back into the physical office space, bring those skills with you. Maybe you learned how to juggle children interrupting Zoom meetings, or maybe you learned that when you sat at home free of distractions you could concentrate better. If that’s the case, bring some headphones to help focus on cubicle work life to help maintain concentration.
When you first go back to work, you may find it difficult to sit in one place for hours on end after being allowed to move about freely. The stress of the workload may seem to be a bit much at first. That’s OK. Take a break when you need to and as many that are allowed.
Remember, this is going to be one step at a time to adjust back into work in office life. Unlike, the circumstances that thrust you into having to learn how to adjust to at-home work or how to relax having no work to do, moving back into the office may take some work to get back into the swing of things. Be patient with yourself, and try to take on one task at a time giving it your undivided focus until you re-adjust. Ultimately, if you bring back with you a good attitude and willingness to make the necessary adjustments and are able to keep work activities separate from home activities, everyone will come out a winner.