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Here's how to let go of your work on vacation and unwind completely

When you go on vacation, you want to unwind. After a busy period, it's time to stop thinking about your work. But once on the beach with a cocktail in your hand, that turns out to be more difficult than expected.


Without wanting to, all kinds of questions are still haunting your mind. Should I have answered that email? And did I hand over the project in the right way? No, there is no real relaxation yet.

But how do you do that: relax on vacation and let go of work? We give you a number of handy tips.

1.         Exercise after your last day at work

You may experience headaches or nausea in the first few days of your vacation, while doing nothing and lying by the pool. It's also known as "leisure sickness. Your body is not used to suddenly doing nothing after a busy period at work. Lying by the pool, your body can't get rid of the energy. Exercising after your last day at work can therefore help.

2.         Undertake an activity

Is it not possible to exercise after your last day at work? Then try, especially on the first days of your vacation, to do an activity. For example, go to a yoga class, surfing lesson or take a walk in nature. This can help release the stress in your body. 

3.         No digital stimuli 

Turn off your phone for at least three days and use your watch to check the time. Because you are receiving far fewer stimuli, you are likely to feel far less restlessness in your body. Do you want to be available for emergencies? Then just give the number of the hotel to the home front.

4.         Don't feel anxious to do something alone on vacation

Are you on vacation with your family, partner or a good friend? That's very nice, but don't feel encumbered to do something on your own for once. Think for example of a walk or lie on the beach. It can give you a lot of rest.

5.         Read a book to relax

Do you like to read business books or self-help books before work? Very good. But on vacation it doesn't help you relax. Once you're poolside, it's better to choose a book that doesn't require you to think work-related. Instead, get carried away by a wonderful novel.

6.         Answering email will come after your vacation

Do you want to be able to relax completely on vacation? Then leave your laptop at home and don't check your phone for work-related emails. That will come after your vacation.

7.           Write down your thoughts

Are you trying to relax by the pool, but do you notice all sorts of work-related things running through your mind? Write those thoughts down. That way you'll increase the chances of getting them out of your head.

8.         Take an afternoon nap if you feel like it

Does your work require you to get up early every day and would you like to sleep in a little while on vacation? Do it if it feels right. And have you ever thought about taking a power nap in the afternoon? It can be great to close your eyes at around three o'clock by the pool.