Whether this is seen as a trivial/first-world-problem or legitimate problem I'd like some advice: I didn't think to take off any time before my new job - I finish on Friday and start a new job on Monday, whilst moving to a new (unfurnished) place which will require setting up.

This is my first job change in quite a while so I did not think of editing the start date beyond my month's notice. All of my colleagues say they would've recommended a 1-2 month gap. I am halfway through my notice and strongly presume it is too late to bump the start date forward without a bad first impression.

It's turned this transition into more of a stress-maximum than an optimistic readjustment. Is there any advisable way to deal with this, or is it just a matter of getting on with it?

There is a similar question regarding a new job in the same company, this is a new company and I think I could've done with a break (I live in the UK).

  • 3
    This could be very dependent on the nature of the work you're expected to be doing. If it's something where there's a long expected onboarding process the answer might be different to one where you're expected to be nearly fully productive from day one. Sep 23, 2022 at 14:37
  • Perhaps, 2 weeks is a sufficient break. The duration of the break depends on how stressful your last job was. If the last job was not too stressful, a week or a few days would be good enough. I did not even take a break between my last 2 jobs as they were not too stressful. Sep 23, 2022 at 23:06

4 Answers 4


Ah, finishing on a Friday and starting on the Monday, been there - done that far too many times (I appear to be a slow learner in that regard).

Give pushing your start date back is perhaps undesirable do you have any options for finishing your notice period early instead? e.g. do you have any annual leave accrued (remember you'll be accruing it even during your notice period)

Getting a large break this way might be unrealistic, but I'm not sure that it's necessary - even a few days to decompress can make a world of difference to such a transition.

If you can't get yourself more time off between the roles a good backup plan is to make plans for that weekend to make sure you do things you find relaxing, and try and keep it clear of anything stressful: if you have any chores that would normally be done at the weekend try and fit them in during the evenings in your last week of notice, get as much as you can of what you need for the new job prepared in advance etc.


Why presume when you can just ask?

Talk to your current/future employer separately, and ask if there's any room to (shorten your notice period / push back your start date) by a few days?

Make it clear that you're prepared to stick to the original date and see how they respond.

Given how short the gap is, even a few days extra might make a big difference.


Assuming there's no obviously time-critical requirement on your new employer's side, I don't see any real harm in asking them if you can push your start date back by a week or two (assuming you still have two weeks until your currently scheduled start date). Depending on the industry they should consider themselves lucky you only had a once month notice period anyway.

IANAL so take this with a pinch of salt, but if the worst case happens and they rescind the offer (they probably can't do this if you've signed an offer, although they can of course hold you to the start date you agreed) you may well have dodged a bullet - if they're not willing to be flexible about your start date by a few days, who knows how they'll be with regards to other working conditions.

If they aren't willing or able to push the start date back, just make sure you understand what the expectations are in terms of your onboarding to the new company, how soon you're expected to be productive etc, and then don't overstretch yourself trying to reach or exceed those goals too soon. Changing jobs is never going to be stress-free but you can certainly make things worse for yourself by pushing yourself too hard too fast in your new role.

  • What happens if the person doing the training has booked their own holiday 2 days after the start date and won't be available to cover a late start?
    – Solar Mike
    Sep 23, 2022 at 17:22
  • 1
    Then they'll say no to his request and he's lost nothing? Sep 24, 2022 at 18:27

Is there any advisable way to deal with this, or is it just a matter of getting on with it?

At this point it's too late to make changes.

Just get on with it and await your next vacation.

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