Coping with the post-holiday blues.

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Things can be tough after the holidays are over. We can feel lost, wandering around in the post-festive limbo.

What day is it? I don't know. 
Are the shop hours normal again? Your guess is as good as mine.
Do we still have turkey in the fridge for sandwiches? Almost certainly.

It’s a confusing period and it can be all too easy to slip into the post-holiday blues.

Although difficult for many there are a variety of things you can do to safeguard yourself against overwhelming despair. While we can’t promise that you’ll be entirely free from ‘the blues‘, we can ensure that these tips should help soften the blow. Even just a little bit.

How to cope with the post-holiday blues.

By Kim (Chimmyville)

The holiday period can be a very busy, stressful time of year, and more often than not we find ourselves surrounded by people. Family members, friends, perhaps even colleagues at your office holiday party. Then, just like that, the masses disband and it’s all over for another year.

Sadly when you’re surrounded by people for so long, only for it to disappear, it can make you feel incredibly lonely. It becomes very easy for us to start to beat ourselves up over a variety of things. Perhaps you feel guilty for over-indulging over the holiday period? Or maybe you’re left dwelling on everything you didn’t accomplish during the year.

Regardless of the reason, the days after the holidays can be emotionally overwhelming, especially when we’re caught in the limbo between Christmas and New Year.

6 ways you can cope with the post-holiday blues.

Make a plan.

Distract your mind by finding something else to focus on. Whether that’s setting up your planner or calendar for the year ahead, or getting lost in a new hobby, choose something that will give you a reason to look forward to in the New Year.

Here are a few ideas.

  • Set up your planner.
  • Create a “To Read List”.
  • Check out local things you, your partner, family or friends can do in the new year. Note them down for later use.
  • Research a new hobby you’ve been wanting to try for a while, like crochet or learning to play the guitar.
Get enough natural light.

It’s well known that a lack of sunlight during the winter months can cause seasonal affective disorder (SAD), so make sure you spend some time outdoors whenever you can. For me, this is usually a nature walk, which not only makes me feel a little better but it’s also a great form of exercise.

Therapy Lamp: Amazon.

How can you get more natural light in the winter months?

  • Open your curtains!
  • Get out for a walk. Even if you find yourself working through the majority of daylight, use your lunch break to get outside.
  • Therapy lights are a Godsend!

If you’d like to read more about the positive impacts of lighting on our mood, check out How Lighting Can Impact Our Mental Health.

Don’t put pressure on yourself.

There’s often a lot of pressure to make New Year Resolutions or goals after the holidays. But there’s no rule that says you have too. The only reason teh majority of people choose to do so is in part due to the pressure put on us by society.

Instead of setting a series of massive goals focus on setting SMART targets. These are smaller, more specific goals allowing you to celebrate even your smallest achievements.

Keep it simple! Don’t set out to save the world when you could start with something simple, like upping your recycling game. Same principle, but far more manageable.

Takedown the decorations.

The festive season is over for another year and the decorations are now nothing but a blues inducing nightmare. They serve as a reminder of the passing of the season, whether it was peaceful or chaotic, and it’s time to take them down!

Set aside time to take down your tree, box up the decorations for another year, and freshen up your space for the New Year ahead. Depending on superstition and tradition, it’s often thought that decorations should remain up until January 6th, but if you feel like ripping them down on the 1st, then you do you.

Take a break.

You’ve been busy with visits, activities, and events. So take some time for you before you go back to ‘normality’ whether that’s work, studying, or something else. One idea (which I admit to doing a lot of this past week) is to just stay in your pajamas all day and relax! You can read one of your new books, watch some movies, take a hot bath and unwind. Simply enjoy the peace and quiet of your home while it lasts.

Taking time out for ourselves doesn’t make us lazy or selfish, it’s necessary. Self-care is NOT selfish, and that’s the real T.

Say thank you.

Giving (and receiving) mail after Christmas can be a very simple way to extend the joy of the holiday season. Everyone likes to receive a piece of snail mail, it’s a lovely change to getting bills in the post, and a bit more personal than email. So, pop a few thank you cards in the mail for anyone that may have given you, or your family, gifts this Christmas

How do you beat the post-holiday blues?

About the Author.

“Hi! My name’s Kim and I’m a lifestyle blogger based in The Cotswolds. I write about my life, wellness, staycations, love of horror movies and more. You can catch me on the following socials and on my blog.”

39 thoughts on “Coping with the post-holiday blues.

  1. I especially love your point about not putting too much pressure on yourself. There’s enough pressure around Christmas & NY as it is. “Keep it simple! Don’t set out to save the world when you could start with something simple, like upping your recycling game” – absolutely, even the small things can make a big difference. Great guest post from Kim.

    PS. Just wanted to say – I’m not ignoring your blog posts, Nyxie, I just can’t ever seem to ‘like’ them any more. I get notifications of new posts of yours by email (they don’t show on the WP reader) so I always come directly to your blog and no amount of reloading seems to make the ‘like’ button appear any more.

    Caz xx

    1. It’s okay, don’t worry. My like button hasn’t been working either on some peoples blogs – it must be a thing with WordPress. But don’t panic! I do appreciate you taking the time to comment and let me know, though. I’ll have to investigate further!

    1. Sunlight is so important to use as humans. More people need to get up and at least throw open the curtains to aid their mood.
      Thank you so much for stopping in and commenting.

  2. My curtains stay open 24/7 so if there is light outside there is light inside. And I have tons of huge windows. It makes such a huge difference in my mood. I literally can’t function if it isn’t super bright.
    As for the other things, some of them are a work in progress. Loneliness can hit even in the midst of people. It is a strange thing.

    1. The only curtains I close in my house are the office and the bedroom, but both are opened in the morning. The light in the office is especially lovely this time of year, even when it is freezing outside!
      Thank you so much for stopping in and reading 🙂

  3. My problem is that I get really excited for snow when the holidays come around because it makes them magical. BUT THEN the holidays are over and I’m stuck with this cold, nasty white stuff. So here I am, tons of snow on the ground, and all I want is summer. Sigh.

    1. We don’t even have snow, just endless cold, and frost. I hope our Spring is good this year and that the sun graces us. Even for a little bit!
      Thank you for reading 😀

  4. I’ve never heard of the post holiday blues!! I tend to feel a bit of relief after the holidays – the stress of gifting or hosting is over, and the kids go back to school, whoooohoooo!!! Though, it also means like 2 harsh months of winter left with not beautiful decorations to get you through it. And I really feel for the people hit deeper from SAD, I’d definitely invest in a sun lamp and mid winter getaway!!

    1. Love this post! My mental health really struggled during those in between days especially – I found planning things to look forward to really helpful and I totally agree with what you said about taking the decorations down, it’s also an excuse to have a bit of a spring clean too which really helps you to feel more productive!

      1. I think we all need to look forward to something so that works. I’ve had a few ideas for things to do this year i.e go to the spa, maybe take a quick holiday etc and it makes you feel better to think ‘Just a wee bit longer until….’
        Thank you so much for stopping in and reading 🙂

    2. I get the feeling of relief. It’s like “Whew, it’s finally all over.” But then I start to feel sadness because the new year will always remind me of the people who are no longer here to see it come in. That and the weather is awful!
      Thank you so much for reading 😀

  5. Setting small targets is very important! I’ve often seen people discouraged because they haven’t been able to reach an unattainable goal.

    1. I find if I set too much of a big goal, it can be too daunting which causes me to cease up.
      Thank you so much for stopping in and reading Kez!

    1. Same! Not least of all because they can be cold and miserable. I just want Spring to appear as soon as possible!
      Thank you for stopping in and reading.

  6. I’ve heard about this holiday blues but never so much… This is why I like to read more about things I don’t know and you have helped me. That’s interesting, thank you for sharing it! – Paolo

  7. We had a nice combination this year! Manic Christmas with all the family over for dinner. But a quiet new years, I love school holidays having kids off school and playing games/watching movies etc. Roll on the next school holidays now in Feb!

    1. We were very much the same. Mad Christmas dash and then a fairly standard and quiet new years. I always find new years more distressing than Christmas for a variety of reasons, but it was actually fine this year.

      Thank you so much for stopping in and reading Kim’s lovely post.

  8. The holidays are such a whirlwind, no wonder it leaves us feeling a little down. These are such easy things to help us out too. I think I’m going to drag my laptop outside to work every so often to soak up some rays. It’s definitely not something I think about on the regular!

    1. Thank you so much for stopping in and reading Kim’s wonderful article. I think we can all relate to feeling out of touch after the holidays as if we’re wandering around unaided.

  9. I’ve definitely been feeling it, especially on this Blue Monday. These are some great tips to get back into the groove!

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