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How to Return to Work After Vacation

Group Therapy: Return From Vacation Plagued With Panic

This question is an excerpt from Group Therapy in our TrèsSugar Community. Add your advice in the comments!

After a wonderfully relaxing long weekend away at my parents house in the mountains, I returned to the city yesterday evening with plenty of time to unpack, clean my house, and prepare myself for the week. However, when I went to bed, I was struck with a horrible bout of insomnia due to a panic attack. Basically, I started to obsess about all of the work I had to do. I couldn't sleep and woke up feeling uneasy and stressed.

This isn't the first time this sort of thing has happened to me. Last year when I went on a two-week vacation to Spain, the night before I came back, I had the worst panic attack of my life. I kept thinking about how much work I had to do when I returned home. I'm wondering how I can keep the state of mind I had while on the weekend/vacation during the week? How can I not get overwhelmed by the work that I know is waiting for me? Any advice would be appreciated!

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healthvideoguide healthvideoguide 7 years
Thank you for a great post. I used to suffer from panic attacks for about five years up until about six months ago. After trying numerous ways to get rid of my panic attacks and anxiety disorder that included pills subscribed by doctors, which didn't help me at all, I found out about this great new system named "PANIC AWAY". It helped me tremendously to get back the control over my life, and I finally got rid of my panic attacks, and I am no longer afraid of them. Today with the help of the "panic away" system I know how to handle, control, overcome and even prevent the panic attacks. So if you suffer too from panic attacks, or you think you do, you must try it. It worked for me when nothing else did. Good luck Jennifer 
jazzytummy jazzytummy 7 years
I agree with all of the comments regarding keeping yourself organized before you leave, checklists, etc, because it gives you a sense of control when you feel like you are spinning out of it. I would also add that when I am gone for a week or so, I have learned to come back home the Saturday before, not the Sunday, if possible. It gives me an extra day to sleep in, catch up around my house and mentally prepare for going back to work, and this has decreased my Sunday night blues as well.
postmodernsleaze postmodernsleaze 7 years
I second chloe bella's comment completely. Panic attacks are severe and are often said by people who have had them to be one of the worst feelings on earth. I read an article once where a large percentage of people with panic attacks that have also broken bones would rather break a bone than have a panic attack. A lot of panic attack first-timers fear they are having a heart attack. Other symptoms are hyperventilating, faintness, nausea, numbness, and tunnel vision. If this is the type of feeling you are having, seek professional help. If you are having general anxiety, I would say this is normal. Especially after returning from a relaxing trip. You've spent the last several days not worrying and then you return to your normal routine of jobs, bills, workouts, etc. etc. etc. I used to get this before bed. My mind would race like crazy and I couldn't concentrate on anything except what I had to do the next day, money worries, etc. I have cut out caffeine after 12:00PM unless I know I will be up really late (this was hard to do because, boy, did I love my afternoon coffee, but it was beneficial!). Try to work in some exercise and time to relax. Take a hot bath within two hours of going to bed. I like mix tape's suggestion of making a list that you can check off. Sometimes just physically seeing an agenda written out makes you feel organized and structured.
mix-tape mix-tape 7 years
You care about your job and excelling at it! I was only gone for a long 4 day weekend and returning from that was making me very stressed the night before. Your life can't be about working, so enjoy the time you DESERVE off of work. Return to work knowing you'll catch up because you always do. I like the idea of making a list. Check lists usually calm me down. Always add something that's easy to cross off, it makes you feel like you're being ultra productive.
skigurl skigurl 7 years
I would say get everything done at work that you can before you go, put an out of office on so that people aren't flooding your inbox while you're off. And have a clean desk so you can feel like you're coming back fresh. But if you honestly are panicking about going back to work, maybe you hate your job and should try to find a new one?
bigestivediscuit bigestivediscuit 7 years
I would start by writing down everything you "have to do" on a piece of paper. Visualizing it and actually seeing it makes it less bad than it is when it's knocking around in your head over and over again. Then prioritize those things and see which ones you have most control over. That will make you feel a bit better. Then, put that piece of paper away in a drawer before bed, so that you're physically "putting them away". To help you sleep in the short term and stave off a panic attack, I would do the following breathing exercise: break your inhalation into 3 parts, pausing at each. At the top of your breath, hold it for a couple seconds, then exhale in 3 parts. Repeat 5 times, then breathe normally for 2 rounds of breath. I use this whenever I'm in a stressful situation or can't sleep and it always helps slow my racing pulse and lower my blood pressure.
chloe-bella chloe-bella 7 years
If you're having actual panic attacks, in the medical sense of the term, then you need to seek professional help. You should talk to your primary care physician, who can recommend a psychologist if necessary. If you are just using "panic attack" to describe the feeling of being very stressed (which is different from an actual panic attack, where you feel like you're dying and can't breathe), the I would recommend doing yoga, which is great for stress relief. Also, though it's not an easy transition to make, quitting caffeine also does wonders for anxiety.
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