As I mentioned earlier this week, on Monday I’m going to be heading to work in an office for the first time in two years. It’s only for a four-week stint and mostly I’m really excited but I have to admit that I’m feeling a little bit nervous too.

Prior to taking a year out in 2013 I’d worked for the same company for over ten years, in various positions and on several magazines but still, it’s been a very long time since I’ve been the totally new girl, unsure about what everybody on the team does, let alone what they’re actually called, unfamiliar with office etiquette or the number for the IT department, and in the dark about the location of everything from the tea-making facilities to the toilets.

Call me shallow, but one of my biggest worries is what to wear on my first day. I’m going to be working on a fashion magazine so getting it right is important. I’ve done a bit of online window shopping (see here if you missed it) but I’m yet to actually buy anything new so panic is starting to set in. Ultimately I figure that too smart is better than too casual and I can always dial down a dress, tailored jacket and heels for trousers of some description, a smart top and flats later in the week. Come to think of it, I’ve barely worn heels for the past two years. I wonder if I can remember how to walk in them…?!

Up there with what to wear is the commute. I’ve worked out my route and how long to leave using an online journey planner, to which I’ll add, ooh, at least half an hour to allow for delays but I’m still considering doing a trial run before the week’s out. Seriously. And even then I’ll still leave a just-in-case buffer. You just never know when there are multiple tube lines involved in your journey and being late on your first day is not a good look.

And then of course there’s the job itself. There’s going to be a totally new way of doing things to get on top of, new systems to get my head around, and a whole new writing style to master. What if I can’t write, edit or even think fast enough? There won’t be the luxury of being able to ponder every word when there are monthly print and daily online deadlines to keep on top of. Perhaps, after a year of mostly working at home, alone, I’ve developed some sort of weird habit like talking to myself? (I just said that aloud, yikes!). What if I can’t even work out how to switch the computer on?! (This did happen to me once).

In my heart of hearts I know I’ll be fine, afterall it’s not as if I haven’t worked 9 to 5, five days a week in a magazine office before although, admittedly, I’ve never had to blog on evenings and weekends as well. It’s going to be a busy month, juggling a full time role, writing for Rock My Style and trying to fit in at least a couple of yoga classes a week. Ultimately however I’m looking forward to the challenge. Just as soon as I’ve worked out how to switch the computer on…

Has anyone else out there recently started, or about to start a new job? Maybe you’ve gone back to work after a career break, gone freelance after being a staffer, or returned to your role after maternity leave? How are you finding it? Or feeling about it, if it’s yet to happen? Any tips to make sure I hit the ground running? Are you doing a day job and an after-hours gig? Any advice for successfully managing the juggle? As ever all thoughts very gratefully received!