How to Get Organized at Work Prior to Taking a Vacation


Do you remember the days when you anxiously awaited your next vacation? As a child, you may have crossed off the days on the family calendar in anticipation of loading up the station wagon and heading to some sleepy beach town or destination in the mountains. However, now that you’re an adult with an important job, your idea of a vacation might be a little skewed.

Instead of thinking about relaxation and fun, it’s quite possible that you spend the days leading up to the vacation stressing over how you’ll be able to step away from work for an extended period of time. Sometimes it can seem as if the business world will stop moving if you step away for even a few precious moments. However, this simply isn’t true.planning a trip

5 Simple Tips for Getting Organized

Even the most important professional can take time away from work. After all, if the president and the first family can take a few trips each year, shouldn’t you be able to as well? Here are a handful of tips designed to help you get organized at work in preparation for vacation.

  •         Find subs. “Going somewhere overnight is one thing, but if you’re planning to head out of town for several days, you’ll need to find someone who can take over your duties while you’re away,” Green Residential, a Houston-based property management company, reminds us. If you have healthy work relationships and regularly help others, you shouldn’t have much trouble finding someone to oversee a couple things while you’re out of town.
  •         Give people a heads up. It’s never smart to head out of town without letting everyone know. Give customers, clients, and business partners notice so that you don’t return to hundreds of emails, voicemails, and an onslaught of missed calls. In addition to making people aware of your vacation before your absence, it’s also smart to set up an automated email response so people don’t get frustrated when you fail to respond in a timely manner.
  •         Put in some extra hours. Sometimes the only way a vacation becomes possible is if you put in some extra hours in the days leading up to the trip. Your family should understand if you have to work a couple 10 or 11-hour days, as opposed to your standard eight or nine. The more you can get done before your trip, the more you’ll be able to relax while on vacation.
  •         Clean up. When you return from vacation, you’ll feel much better if you come back to a clean workspace. Before taking off, tidy up your office, organize documents, take out the trash, and get things organized. Psychologically, you’ll feel a lot better about leaving work behind when you know things aren’t a disheveled mess.
  •         Be (somewhat) available. You want to avoid being totally unavailable while on vacation. It may sound ideal, but your company probably won’t like the fact that you’re adamant on being totally disconnected. Schedule a couple of different times during your vacation when the office can contact you. Make these windows very brief so that you don’t feel like you’re constantly on-call, but do allow for some contact.

Returning to Work After Vacation

Now, it should also be noted that getting back to work after vacation is often equally as difficult as preparing to leave for a vacation. In fact, it’s probably more difficult due to the fact that you’re tired and slightly depressed that you have to exchange your bathing suit for a work suit again. Check out this guide from Kathryn Dill of for ways to make the return to work a little easier.


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