It’s driving you crazy? It’s driving me crazy. We are all coo-coo for cocoa puffs. Just when we get back from one vacation, we are 100% ready for another one. It’s not that we weren’t grateful for the first. Trust me. We needed that time.
But we weren’t ready to come back. Sunday evening was a nightmare filled with dread of the Monday morning to follow. Then Monday morning came and we cried a little into our pillows when our loathsome alarm clocks rang, reminding us it was time to wake up and be an adult.
“Whyyyy?!!” we moaned. And after mumbling “I hate my life” a few times, we dragged ourselves out of bed, got ready, and got ourselves to work.
And then we were okay. Being back at work actually wasn’t nearly as bad as we made it out to be.
Then three weeks pass by…
Vacation brain funk returns with a vengeance. We watch the clock like it’s our job. But it’s not. This is a curse. And we hate it. Everyone who says “welcome to the real world” should get seriously vicious side-eye.
I mean, who can blame us?
After 20 or so years of being in school (and enjoying long summer breaks), having to adjust to this new lifestyle is a serious struggle.
I won’t say to you, “Welcome to the real world!” But I will say this: you’re not doing yourself any favors by staring at the clock and obsessing over how little PTO per year you’ll get for the next 40+ years.
If you don’t want to be a vacation brained, clock obsessing maniac for the rest of your life, you need to do this:
Make the most of your daily and weekly free time.
If you have frequent, routine and non-routine things to look forward to, you’ll feel better about the present. Life won’t be so mundane anymore, and you won’t feel like you are living for the next vacation.
Having positive routines in your daily life means that no matter what, you’ve got something good going for you and something to fall back on if your other plans fall through. Some consistency is good.
Daily routines that make me happy:
- Working out
- Chatting with bae & friends
- Catching up on TV
- Eating cookies
- Reading at night before bed
- Family & friend nights (movies, games, campfires and snacks)
- Long distance book club meetings
The trick, especially with non-routine things, is to keep a calendar and write down the things you want to do, including times, prices, and addresses. You’re more likely to go if you have reminders and the necessary info at your fingertips.
Non-routines to shake things up:
- BBQs and parties
- Bike trips
- Whitewater rafting
- Visiting museums & attending cultural events
- Road trips to visit faraway friends
- Homemade brunch w/ friends
- Using a pogo stick to smash beer cans with a younger sibling (because why not)
Whether you want to plan some fun for just yourself or with friends, the event section of your local newspaper (in print or online) is a great place to start looking for ideas. Businesses, organizations, and groups in your area submit to it, so you can bet it’s pretty thorough!
Seriously. Don’t let the daily grind get you down. If you find that you haven’t done something non-routine in a few weeks, stop what you are doing and start planning!