CLUTTERED DESK, CLUTTERED MIND. Like it or not, clutter is a sure sign that you are under too much pressure. And Christmas is a sure time for this warning bell to ring. If it does, heed it - and start the new year with one less thing to think about.
BE RUTHLESS. Get to your desk half an hour earlier one morning (but not Christmas Eve) and bin every piece of paper you don't need or want.
SORT THE REMAINDER into the items you want to deal with now or within your first week back, those that will wait until after that and those you wish to keep for reference.
RE-PRIORITISE EVERY ITEM in your pending tray. Place each into one of six differently coloured files (one for each day of your next working week and one marked later).
FILE EVERYTHING you must keep. Categorise it all clearly.
TIP OUT YOUR DRAWERS and refill them with essentials only. Get rid of anything you are keeping 'just in case'.