5 Ways to Minimize Out-Of-Office Anxiety
Taking time off from work? Discover ways to minimize your out-of-office worries and lay the groundwork for a relaxing vacation.
Going on vacation is supposed to be rejuvenating. It’s a time to relax and focus on things other than work like your family, friends, or passions. But what if you’re the type of person who can turn off work apps but not the constant need to check them? What if you can‘t help but feel (or worse, guilt) the minute your out-of-office status takes effect?
Out-of-office anxiety, or the stress that comes with taking time off from work, is the product of an “always-on” culture. A LinkedIn article by shares common causes, which include normalized overworking, perceived job insecurity, and lack of work-life balance. A survey by found that people in on-site and mid-sized companies are more likely to experience this.
If worries plague your much-needed breaks, read on. Doing the following can help you have a stress-free vacation.
Get Your Ducks in a Row
Can you actually prepare your away? The U.S. Office of Disease Prevention and Health Promotion recommends it. Dealing with stress in a positive way can make you feel more in control of your situation. You can do this by making sure you don’t leave any loose ends and unfinished tasks.
Inform concerned teammates and managers about your time off and prepare a handover that covers your day-to-day tasks, active and dormant long-term projects, and other reminders. Let them know how to reach you in case of an emergency.
PRO TIP: Don’t forget to prepare your in advance to prevent additional stress. Bring Dove Facial Cleansing Mousse Moisture Care to keep your skin and comfortable in any climate. It has 40% Active-boost Serum that gives you plump skin for up to 24 hours. Top off your with POND'S UV Hydrate Sunscreen to protect your skin from UV damage while keeping it moisturized.
Set Clear Boundaries
That said, you will have to draw the line and define “emergency,” for your own sake. If you’re an anxious person, you’ll probably want to entertain every question even while you’re out-of-office. That simply won’t do if your goal is to have a restful vacation.
Psychologist Dana Gionta Ph.D., author of From Stressed to Centered: A Practical Guide to a Healthier and Happier You, says can protect you, clarify your responsibilities, and preserve your physical and emotional energies. Something as simple as setting aside time to address work messages – and sticking to that schedule; no more, no less – can help.
Write an Out-of-Office Message
It’s amazing how a simple out-of-office automatic reply can give you so much peace of mind, especially if “ignoring” people keeps you up at night. A well-crafted OOO message gives your co-workers and clients just enough information to make them feel at ease while you’re away. It should indicate when you’ll be back and whom to contact in your absence. If they message you anyway, remember that you are not obligated to reply.
Stay Off the Work Apps
You know what’s to blame for the blurred line between work and play? That handy block of interconnected circuits that you call . In it are a bunch of tiny apps that constantly ask for stuff, remind you of stuff, and feed you stuff. Since they’re all in one place, it can be difficult to isolate the urgent from the rest.
Even apps that are for “play,” like Instagram, can be messengers of work-related doom and you have no way of filtering what comes in. Sort of. If your heart can take it, you can log off all your professional accounts. If not, turn on “quiet mode” in Settings or manage your notifications on each application.
Have a Return-to-Work Plan
What’s the first thing you’ll tackle upon returning to work? Who’s the first person you’ll talk to? Having a list of priorities can keep you from feeling overwhelmed at the thought of diving back into the grind. Your return-to-work plan can help you get back on track in an organized and efficient way, especially after taking a long vacation.
Minimize your out-of-office anxiety by observing one or all of the steps above. It all depends on how much you can take on at the moment and, of course, what you need. You deserve to enjoy your time off without – a little bit of extra work before the time comes is certainly worth it.