Remember what it was like at the start of a new school year? The fresh new backpack, school supplies, classes, and, according to our teachers, a clean academic slate. Though it was hard to leave summer vacation behind, it was always so exciting - even if you were nervous - to go back to school.
As adults, we still habitually slow down during the summer, but without that hard and fast first day of school it’s hard to get into the swing of things. I just got back from vacation myself, and I know I’m not alone when I say that the workday blahs are a bit harder to shake off after a break. Which is totally natural!
The key is getting your mojo back. While a touch of the post-summer blues is common, like dozing off in class, one time too many will eventually get you in trouble.
So, how do you shake the sand out of your shoes and get back on track? Over the years, I’ve found a combination of the following does the trick.
1. Be disciplined. Ask any successful person and they’ll tell you living the dream takes a lot of work. Sitting at your desk thinking about how much you wish you were on vacation does nothing except make you miserable and suck away energy you could otherwise utilize to achieve your goals. Commit to giving 100% no matter how dreary the task and hold yourself to that promise. It won’t be easy at first, but in due time you’ll have formed a better nose-to-the-grindstone habit.
2. Reconnect. Get back in touch with what has fulfilled you at work in the past. Do this by asking yourself to recall specific examples of when you felt good about work. If you’ve always really enjoyed mentoring your staff, make a special effort to include that in your everyday schedule.
3. Retrain your brain. The impact of negative self-talk is real. Just thinking how tired or bored you are perpetuates that feeling. So, when you catch yourself dwelling on the negatives of your job, immediately redirect your thoughts somewhere brighter. Maybe you have a great team, or you enjoy the sense of accomplishment in organizing different groups for a project. Whatever aspects are positive, those are what deserve your focus.
4. Accomplish. Sometimes it’s the little things. Clean out your email inbox. Wrap up that project. Delegate a task to a team member who has been asking for more responsibility. Call that client and follow up. By the end of the day, even if you’ve knocked out only the small stuff, you’ll have a sense of accomplishment that will feel great.
What are your go-to ways to re-engage at work? Share in the comments below!