Dan shares his fishing, travel adventures and updates from The Mackay Region

Back-to-work blues - how I crash-landed my way into a new holiday

Back-to-work blues - how I crash-landed my way into a new holiday

I’ve come down with something known as the ‘back to work blues’. My symptoms include a feeling of nausea as I open my emails, the need for multiple coffees by 9am and flashbacks of my blissful, relaxed holiday.

Don’t get me wrong, I love my job; but even the best job in the world cannot match the feeling of waking up with no deadlines, no one to report to, and no real decisions to make.

It usually takes me a little while to get into holiday mode but once I’m there, it’s hard to leave. On my last day of holidays, I find myself desperately clutching to the last few hours of daylight, squeezing in as many recreational activities as I can and putting off ironing my work clothes as long as possible.

When I finally get to work and switch off my ‘Out of Office’, I hear my colleague rattle off a statistic; something like 76 per cent of workers say their stress levels are back to pre-holiday levels within a week of returning to work.

That’s what got me thinking about how I can overcome these terrible ‘back to work blues’ once and for all. But my vision was blurry and all I could think about was my next hit of fresh water gorges, bushwalking, waking up with sunrise and watching wallabies on the beach.  

And then it occurred to me that my diagnosis was not as serious as I first thought. I pushed aside the pile of work my 2016-self thought my 2017-self could handle on my first week back and scribbled a few things down on paper. The only thing that could make me feel better was planning another holiday. That was my drug and I needed my fix pronto!

Unfortunately my funds (or lack of annual leave loading) did not allow for an around-the-world holiday with all the trimmings, so I decided to make a list of some really cool nearby spots that I hadn’t visited in a while and pencil them in to my diary. That would at least feed the addiction enough. 

  1. Eungella National Park: bushwalking, exploring, nature and seeing platypus in the wild
  2. Finch Hatton Gorge: a swim in the freshwater gorge and stopping in to the Pinnacle Pub for a pie on the way home
  3. Cape Hillsborough: sunrise with the wallabies and amazing views from the lookout
  4. Dolphin Heads Resort: cocktails and live music by the pool
  5. Keswick Island: Basil Bay, butterflies and bushwalks – what’s not to love!  


With the prospect of my mini-holidays looming, my productivity levels now seem to be back on track and I’m ready for the year ahead. Bring on 2017 and a year full of adventures!

Ps. If you’re looking for some holiday inspiration, visit or check out Mackay Tourism’s Instagram page (@visitmackay) and put those back-to-work blues behind you. 

Cover Photo Credit: (@henry_brydon via IG)

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Keswick Island - Photo Credit: Belinda McMahon (@stormybeachbelle via IG)


Sunrise in Eungella - Photo Credit: (@digital_trekker via IG)


Finch Hatton Gorge - Photo credit: Jake Birch (@_jakeliveshere via IG)


Wildlife at sunrise, Cape Hillsborough National Park - Photo Credit: (@caseyeveleighphotography via IG)


52 Melissa

A true local, Melissa was born and bred in Mackay and lists travelling and exploring among her favourite things to do. She's traversed mountains in the Andes of Peru. swam alongside crocodiles in the jungle of Bolivia, cycled mountains in Mexico, skydived in New Zealand and explored Europe, South East Asia, Fiji and China. But she still has much more to see, particularly in her hometown!   As Communications Officer at Mackay Tourism, Melissa gets to bring her love for writing together with her love for travelling.  She's been a radio, tv and print journalist, as well as Public Relations Advisor for a variety of different organisations. In her spare time, she teaches classes at the gym and loves exploring untouched areas in The Mackay Region.   


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