I had a blast at the American Music Therapy Association conference in Kansas City this year! But my plane got in this afternoon, I went to visit family after I landed, I came home this evening and got my kid bathed and put in bed, and now I have to face a long work week. Plus my house is a bit of a mess….
Here’s what I do to recover from conference and get ready to get back to “real life.”
- Unpack. It’s tempting to just leave the suitcase for tomorrow, but if I get it unpacked right away, then it’s no longer hanging over my head. Plus I’ve made sure I haven’t forgotten anything important for this week. Since I don’t have time to process the conference stuff tonight, I’ll put all of the papers, business cards, receipts, and things into the conference bag that I got at registration, and put it by my desk. The clothes I put into the laundry basket, and then I put toiletries and other things away. It took me less than 5 minutes to do all of that.
- Start the Laundry. When I unpack my suitcase, I have a full laundry basket, so it’s just easier to put it into the washer right away and then I will have clean clothes for the week. This took me 2 minutes.
- Look at the Calendar. I’ve been out of my routine, so now I need to reorient myself to my reality back at home and work. So I’ll check the calendar, so I know what to expect this week, and focus on what’s happening tomorrow. I spent 5 minutes on this step.
- Get ready for tomorrow. I am tired. I will probably be tired tomorrow. So the more I can do to prepare tonight, the less I’ll have to think in the morning. I checked my work bag to make sure it has everything I need in it for tomorrow. I cleaned out my purse after conference and reset it for my regular use. I made lunch (actually, I just planned lunch and thought through my morning to make sure I’d have enough time to make it). I figured out what I would wear. Also, I made a list of things to do tomorrow. This took me 10 minutes.
- Schedule time to process conference. If I don’t do this, my conference stuff will sit in a pile on my desk and I’ll forget all the ideas I had and people I connected with. So I scheduled time in my calendar to go through my conference bag and process all of that (which is another blog post or three coming soon).
- Go to bed early. Conference often involves sleep deprivation with early sessions and late night networking. So I’m going to go to bed early tonight, knowing I’m prepared for tomorrow.
I hope you had fun at conference. I’ll tell you all about my experience later. For now, I need to go to bed!