Dreading going back to work? 5 ways to make your return to the office more bearable

If you, like us, have been out-of-office for more than a week, the return to work may seem a little daunting. Here are five tips to make your transition back to work less scary


Our team here at IMAGE has just returned to work post-Christmas holidays – and we can confirm that the first morning back was tough. A week of sleeping in, staying up late and napping in-between (not to mention copious amounts of festive food and drinks) made this morning's alarm extra unpleasant.

If you are one of the many people still out-of-office 'til Monday, here are five ways to help make your transition back to work more bearable.

Book something to look forward to

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A trip, a show, a meal – anything. Having something fun to look forward to is essential for making it through January. Whether it's a comedy show, cinema tickets, or even just a family meal at your local eatery – reserve something pronto.

When colleagues are gathered around the kettle in the canteen, giving out about being back to work, you'll be relieved to have something good lined up.

Write a list of tasks the night before

Preparation is key. Sometimes the fear of returning to work stems from not knowing where to start. Make a rough plan of action.

Step one: clear out your inbox, marking important emails to reply to later. Step two: figure out which tasks are essential for today and stick to them. Everything else can wait.

Plan what you'll wear

Decide what you want to wear the night before, and leave it out (ironed and ready-to-wear) for the following morning. That includes underwear and shoes.

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Do you have everything you need in your handbag? Office keys, Leap card, headphones and lunch money? If nighttime-you leaves everything ready, morning-you will be ever so grateful. Trust us.

Declutter your desk

A new year signals a fresh start, and that includes your workspace. If you have non-important (or outdated) files and papers on your desk – it's time to visit the shredder and/or recycling zone. Clear away anything you don't use and wipe down the surfaces. A mini spring-clean like this can help you feel both invigorated and motivated.

Leave the office for lunch

Nothing makes time drag more slowly than staying in the office from morning to night – so make plans to go out for lunch. It doesn't mean you need to buy food out-and-about (we know money is tight this time of year), but make the most of the opportunity to stretch your legs and enjoy some fresh air.

Take your packed lunch down to a nearby park, or if you're lucky to work near a canal or seafront, make the most of the waterside views. The main thing is to break up the day.

Feature photo: The Office, Deedle-Dee Productions

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