Easing back into work after a vacation is tough. Think about going back into the work on your average Monday. Even after only two days off, it takes some time to get back into the flow. Keep your expectations in check for your first day back.
1. Start with voicemails, then emails.
Typically if someone has called you, it's more urgent than an email. Similarly, if they called, they probably emailed first. Calling them back means you can skip reading their messages afterwards. See also: Tips to Tackle Post-Vacation Email.
2. Stick to busy work, leaving deep thinking and strategy for later in the week.
On vacation you got used to moving around, so sitting still and thinking about a complex task may be too much for the first day back. This is not the time to plan or strategize, so harness your lower level of productivity right now to do those little things you never have time for like filing, organizing, and transcribing random notes you left for yourself around your desk, cube, or office. Busy work is just as necessary as "big thinking" work.
3. Schedule meetings.
You may be tempted to dig into all of your work, but that typically ends in staring blankly at your computer screen. It's super hard to self start after a vacation, so this might be a good time to have meetings where you'll benefit from other people's energy, and announce your presence back in the office.
4. Plan to be in the office during a slower time of day.
Stay late or come in early, but take more breaks or a longer lunch to balance it out. I find it about a million times easier to dive back into my work when the phone is not ringing off the hook and my coworkers aren't asking about my vacation.
5. Use a fresh set of eyes to organize your desk.
Rearrange your office equipment, files and desktop now. You may have your desk set up a certain way because "you've always done it like that." Now that you've been away for a while, take another look and see if your setup makes sense.
Organizing tips to help you in every room of your home, in your office, and while managing your time.
Tips to help you be organized for traveling, including packing tips, itinerary tips, organizing, and how to return from travel and be organized.