Monday, May 3, 2010

Getting Back to Your Routine

It’s tough getting back to a routine when you come back from a trip. Even though I did do some work while overseas, I was still on a different routine. Before I left, I was marketing regularly and starting to build some momentum. Now, it’s tough to get the willpower to buckle down and keep working even after I’ve finished client projects.

Here are some tactics I’m using to try to force myself back into the routine.

Make lists. Whenever I feel overwhelmed, I make lists. And I get a perverse sort of pleasure from crossing things off the list. Even though the first list I made when I touched down still has items I haven’t completed, I feel more productive and organized when I’m working from a list.

Get out of the house. I have the hardest time concentrating in my own apartment these days. It’s helped me a lot to get out—just going to a coffee shop down the street helps me refocus my mind and concentrate on the task at hand. I try to pick places with no Internet connection so I don’t have the added distraction of checking my email constantly.

Take stock of your finances. There’s nothing quite so bracing as taking a look at your bank account and credit card bill after you’ve just gotten back from a trip. To make matters worse, I had to pay my taxes almost immediately after getting back to make the deadline. Knowing I have to work extra hard to get my finances back to the levels they were at before helps keep me motivated.

Plan your next trip. Of course, I don’t want to just scrape by. I want to go back to Europe. Or maybe go to Japan next time. Keeping short-term and long-term goals in mind also keeps me motivated to get back in my routine.

How do you stay motivated after getting back from a long trip?


Lori said...

Love your last one especially. It's like realizing the grim reality, but then realizing you'll need another vacation once you get back to work.

Hope you had a great time! Loved reading about it on the blog. :)

Mridu Khullar said...

Yup, planning the next trip works for me. Doesn't that fall under the procrastination category though?

Jennifer Williamson said...

Haha--yep, it's procrastination. But at least it's procrastination that keeps you motivated, theoretically--you have to work to earn that next trip.

Lori: Yes, I had a FABULOUS time. Still a bit in culture shock!