Let’s be real. We all work hard every day. When we finally get a chance to go on vacation, we want to make sure we are relaxing. We want to spend our quality time with friends and family. However, when we come home from said relaxing vacation, we are often bombarded with the reality of life. Suddenly, our relaxing vacation feels like a mere distant memory. We are confronted with the chaos of unanswered emails, laundry, a messy house, and an unkempt lawn.

Thankfully, there are ways that we can minimize this transition to help ease us back into our daily schedules.

One thing many of us don’t consider when planning our vacation: How we can help prepare for our return?

One helpful tip is to cook some freezer-friendly meals. This way your first few nights back are not spent racing to the grocery store to whip up last minute dinners. You will have enough to do as it is. Some healthy and ready meals in your freezer will be a lifesaver. Also, consider doing a thorough house clean before jet-setting off to your destination. Coming home to a tidy and organized home will set the tone for your first week back to reality.

And then there’s the other side of the stick – you don’t have to do it all alone!

We are seeing a global trend of outsourcing of everyday tasks. From grocery shopping to laundry services to dry cleaning pick up to errand running, people around the world are dealing with long to-do lists and seeking help from an extra pair of hands. There are tons of services that we can outsource to make our lives easier.

For example, personal concierge services that were once reserved for the elite are now being considered an affordable luxury. Few of us can really afford to outsource all the time, but there are times in our lives that it makes sense. And returning home from vacation is one of them. Instead of returning to an empty fridge, consider using an online grocery delivery service or your friendly neighbourhood concierge who will purchase and put away all of your fridge and pantry essentials.

And even better, what if someone else could handle your vacation laundry? All you have to do is bundle it up, leave it at your front door and let the laundry service pick it up and return it washed and folded.

While you are away basking in the sun or skiing on the slopes, why not have the peace of mind that someone you know and trust is checking in on your home, especially in the winter months when we can experience extreme weather. Ask somebody to check in, shovel the snow; examine the house for busted pipes, and even leave the occasional light on to ward off thieves. Having someone manage the home front for you while you relax on vacation will save you the stress of coming home to the unexpected.

Some may ask, why should we accept help when we could just do it ourselves?

Well, why not! What is wrong with asking for help when you need it? We are all time-starved. We spend almost 30% of our waking time on home-related work and the rest is largely spent working and commuting. The pace of modern life has whittled down our free time and anything we can do to buy some time back boosts our happiness and restores life balance. And when we are returning home from vacation, where we have been able to recharge, let’s continue that pattern and give ourselves a break.

As women, we are always striving for more balance in life, and, while there is no such thing as the perfect balance, there is a solution that suits each individual best. Outsourcing or asking for a helping hand when coming home from vacation is a simple way of achieving a greater sense of calm and happiness and will allow us to enjoy those last cherished moments of our holidays.