Scheduled time off is always something to look forward to. For some of us, though, it can be anxiety-inducing. We worry about the work waiting for us or how people will feel about our absence. Your paid time off (PTO) should be relaxing and restful. With that in mind, here are four tips and tricks to help you improve your time off and make your PTO more enjoyable.
Tip #1: Plan your PTO well in advance.
The first way you can improve your time off is to plan for your time off as early as possible. If you are planning a vacation or want to take a specific holiday off, don’t wait to put in your request. This increases the chances you will get your time off. It also gives you ample time to rearrange your plans if you cannot get the time you want.
Tip #2: Prioritize tasks.
In the weeks before your PTO, take a serious look at the tasks you need to complete. Make a list of what needs to be done before you take time off and what can wait. When you organize your tasks this way, you’ll accomplish more and feel at ease during your time off.
Tip #3: Make a “To-Do” list.
Make a separate “to-do” list for when you return. Review all the tasks you determined can wait, ensuring nothing falls through the cracks when you return. Not only will this jog your memory when you return, but it will help your team be on the same page as you.
Tip #4: Let people know.
Don’t assume that your coworkers and clients know you’re scheduled for time off. Even if you have a courtesy Out of Office (OOO) reply to your correspondence, you may receive last-minute requests that add stress to your PTO. Take the time to let others know you’ll be unavailable and for how long. Also, provide an email contact for support, HR, or another department in case of emergency requests.
Your time off from work should be a period of relaxation and renewal. Don’t allow stress to creep in and ruin an otherwise enjoyable vacation. Taking a few steps to smooth the way, prioritize tasks, and let others know you’ll be away will improve your time off.
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