Surviving your first week back at work

Surviving your first week back at work

Many people have had time off work during the festive period. It can be an enjoyable time away, but at the start of January, you may come to an uncomfortable realisation. It’s time to go back to work.
For many reasons, people don’t look forward to going back to work after a break. We’ve put together some tips to help you get through your first week at work.

Take your time coming back

Don’t rush into everything on your first day back. Take your time, if possible schedule meetings for later in the week so you have time to prepare. Returning to work after a break is an adjustment, don’t stress if you haven’t hit the ground running.

Make a list

As you work through your emails, voicemails or any other messages you may have, make a list of tasks. Once you’ve made your list, highlight 5 tasks that have the highest priority or are important. Aim to complete these tasks over the first few days back.

Use your breaks

Be sure to take your lunch breaks and spend some of your day away from your workplace (if you can). Also, aim to leave work on time. Staying back will not help you transition back into your work routine.

Do things that energise you

Stay active in your times outside of work. Go for a run, walk or bike ride or some gardening in the afternoons.


Sometimes the dread of returning to work is because of more underlying issues. You may not want to return because there’s something upsetting or toxic present at your workplace. For help with these issues, you can seek support from a professional in Individual Counselling.