Most people look forward to the holidays, but post-holiday depression can be difficult.
The excitement of the holidays, no matter what holiday you observe, is overwhelming and joyful, but after the holidays are over, depression can set in. Most of us know about this feeling, it either creeps in after Christmas or follows up after the New Year. All we know is that one day we’re busy opening presents, and the next day we’re cleaning up the aftermath.
The end of the holiday season and post-holiday depression
After the holidays, we also have to go back to work. While some people work through the holidays or only get a few days off, there are many of us who get weeks away from the workplace. We get accustomed to this vacation as well.
When the holidays end, work returns and this can be depressing in and of itself. So, the goal is to get rid of post-holiday blues and depression.
Ways to cope with the end of the holidays:
1. Plan the next holidays
While this may sound strange, preparing for the next holidays can often lift a bit of the blues from your shoulders. Yes, Christmas is over, but that doesn’t mean you can’t make plans for future festivities.
If your holidays were spent traveling, and you’re thinking of traveling again next year, then start your planning now. While depression can set in quickly, you can cut it off at the pass with new plans and new ideas.
2. Get as much sunshine as possible
Seasonal depression strikes hard during the wintertime, but the holidays and fun can temporarily help lift your mood. So, what happens when the fun is over? You guessed it, post-holiday depression.
If you suffer from depression anyway, and the holidays are just ending, you should get as much sunshine as possible to fill your body with vitamin D. Vitamin D works great at combating the severe blues. If you cannot get enough sunshine, other forms of light can help a little.
3. Stay busy
Maybe your holidays were busy, and then after they’re over, you suddenly slow down. When you feel that laziness set in, jump up and find something to do. That’s right, post-holidays don’t have to take away your energy.
Find an activity to enjoy, go to the gym, or even start a new project. This helps you get the next year started on a positive note, chasing away the blues. Here’s an idea: why not go help someone in need. Helping isn’t just for those special moments which touch the heart. You should always try to help people when you can.
4. Immortalize holiday moments
Chances are, you took many pictures during the holidays. Now would be a great time to take those photos and any other small mementos and make a collage or add to a scrapbook. This helps you remember the great times during the holiday and gives you the motivation to plan your next holiday.
Looking at these photos also brings closure to the holiday and makes that fact more tangible for you. Even though it’s sad when the holidays are over, you have these images to remember every moment.
5. Learn something new
This is a rather broad idea but an extremely good one. You can either learn a new talent, or you can brush up on one that’s gotten a bit rusty over time. If you used to play piano, as I did, then it’s time to start tickling those ivories again.
If you want to learn something totally new, then maybe learning a new language would be a great start at your clean slate from the holidays. You can paint, you can dabble in sculpture, or maybe it’s time you finally took that CPR class – after all, we all need to learn how to save a life.
6. It’s time for introspection
Did you know that the holidays can also serve as an escape from the routine life? Yes, some people enjoy the holidays, but struggle going back to their day to day life, jobs, or homes. When the holidays are over, it’s a good idea to take a step back, spend a few days or a week looking at your life and asking yourself if you are truly happy.
If you aren’t happy, now’s the time to start making the changes necessary to improve your life. Remember, don’t make rash decisions immediately after the holidays, but make sure you assess your daily life and adjust as needed.
7. Spend more time clearing the mind
Holidays not only bring clutter to the home, but it also drags up clutter and stuffs it into your brain. When it’s all over, it’s good to get back to meditation or prayer, or whichever works for you and your beliefs.
If you have no spiritual beliefs, then you can still center yourself in the present by refusing unwanted thoughts or ideas from others. Clearing the mind will help you adjust and enjoy some of the other ideas I’ve listed above.
It’s time for renewal
Post-holiday depression is hard to deal with sometimes. I even remember getting the blues as a teenager, but that was mostly because I had to return to school. You may have other ideas for beating these blues and starting that clean slate, and I hope it works well for you.
Now, I’m off to work on my piano lessons again, maybe a little painting and definitely some exercise. I hope you have a wonderful and happy holiday! Now, let’s start some new things in our lives.
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