Saturday, December 26, 2015

Tips for Kicking Post-Holiday Blues

As the holiday season comes to an end, so, too, does the high octane way you've planned, shopped, traveled, and socialized.

The holiday momentum of go, go, go screeches to a grinding halt. Problem is, all the neurochemistry you needed to help you get through the holidays - stress hormones called cortisol and adrenaline – are leaving you feeling burned out, irritable, and just plain cranky.

Maybe your hopes for holidays with family and friends were unmet, and you now have to deal with emotional let-down.

Or maybe the march of the holiday bills is on its way -and thinking about paying the piper is not only depleting your bank account but your emotional well-being.

All of these experiences are symptoms of Post Holiday Blues. Well, here are some tried and true tips to help you ease this post holiday down time.

 5 Tips to Kick the Blues 

  1. Sleep. After prolonged periods of stress, the body needs more sleep to slow the production of cortisol and adrenaline. Schedule a pajama day to just do nothing and rest. Consider unplugging from technology to give yourself some time to refuel. 
  2. Exercise. Moving your body at least 30 minutes a day will help rid excess adrenaline and cortisol that keep you from relaxing and/or sleeping soundly. Walk, run, and play with the dog. Have a catch with the kids. Just move your body. 
  3. Look forward. Keep your eyes on the next prize. The next birthday, an upcoming concert, a sporting event, etc. This keeps you forward-looking into the year rather than concentrating on the past.
  4. Relive the Memories. Objects and experiences help us embrace memories. Make sure you wear that new shirt or have the holiday photos somewhere in view. Taking time to appreciate the best-loved holiday moments will offset sadness. 
  5. Talk about it. Sharing your emotional experiences about the holidays with others with can help you avoid feeling stuck post-holiday. Talking is also a great way of revisiting happy moments, making sense of sad or frustrating experiences and solidifying self-decision making in the new year.


Michelle Louise said...

Thanks for this post. I can definitely relate to the post-adrenalin low. The idea of a pajama day appeals to me! I head home from the holidays about two days before I have to go back to work. That gives me sort of a vacation from my vacation, and also a day for the much needed post-vacation chores of laundry and grocery shopping. I might need to add in some pajama time!

S'onnie said...

happy new year.. I for one am glad the season is over - Nothing like family squabbles to make a day awful. I made an exception to my rule to never attend family gatherings because my mother is so unwell but I am definitely back following the rule.

PTC said...

If they kept playing Christmas music, that would help. The radio stations cut you off cold turkey with the Christmas music, it's sad.

Dr. Deb said...

Thanks for the comments, everyone. I hope 2016 is a good year for us all.