How to Recover from #AMTA15

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.”

  1. 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.
  2. 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.
  3. 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.
  4. 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.
  5. 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).
  6. 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!