Successful Business Trip Recovery
Jetting off to a quick, mid-week meeting can be one a rewarding experience but it can also be exhausting. After a full day of meetings, we often grab a quick snack then head to the hotel room to work, only to return home bleary-eyed and frazzled.
Seek out “rest gaps”
Cab rides, waiting to board a flight and layovers are all perfect opportunities to practice habits that recharge you. Let your mind wander and take in your surroundings.
Tack on a “re-entry day”
Extend your out-of-office message to include both the day before you leave and the day after you get back, giving you time for last-minute tasks before you go and catching up when you return. Expect to feel sluggish when you return and plan for it. If you feel lethargic and fuzzy, you are more likely to make mistakes, and your decisions and interactions with others will suffer.
Schedule no appointments for your first day back, but allow breaks for quiet time, cat-napping or walking around the building. Studies show that 10 minutes every hour is optimal. While many people feel too busy to do this routinely, it will make a big difference on those low-energy days.
Dealing with the mail
Perhaps the most daunting challenge is dealing with the avalanche of emails that pile up in your absence.
Try sorting by subject, since there will often be an entire conversation containing several messages with the same subject line. Delete everything but the most recent one, then read it from the bottom up. Then sort by “From” and delete or file for later the newsletters, advertising and other junk. If you’re on Gmail, the primarily/social/promotions folders will take care of this for you.
Now work from the oldest to the newest. Make sure you deal with each message rather than leaving it “for later”.
The benefits of quick, mid-week business trips appear when we change our perspective. On your next trip, aim for a different experience with practices that encourage reflection and renewal.
How do you recover from business trips?
Adapted from an article by Maura Nevel Thomas, entrepreneur.com