Family and friends have gone home. Ill-fitting gifts require trips back to stores. Leftovers are being tossed in the trash. Decorations are deposited back in their bins. It’s time to return to five-day workweeks for the foreseeable future.
The aftermath of the holidays can sometimes lead to the blues. Anticipation and excitement have dissipated. There may be disappointment in things reverting to how they used to be. However, here are 10 things you can do to maintain and generate energy simulating the holidays. No need to wait a few months for the next ones to arrive.
- Make plans with others. Don’t let the holidays be the only time you see the people who matter to you. When you say, “Let’s not wait so long next time,” mean it! Reach out to friends and family, and put dates on the calendar so you know you’ll see them soon and you’ll have those times to look forward to.
- Take up a new hobby, learn a novel skill, or begin a creative project. Plant seeds that will blossom as a result of your efforts. It’s always nice to have something to be eager to devote your time to.
- Plan a getaway. To break up the winter doldrums, arrange some time away. Even a local overnighter can enable you to feel refreshed, renewed, and re-centered.
- Spend your gift cards. If you’ve received a gift card or two, go out and buy something special to lift your spirits. Besides, you may lose or forget about them if you don’t.
- Move your body. Being active is important in beating the blues. Get outside and go for a walk. Join an exercise class. Start stretching every day (you know you’ve been meaning to!). Go dancing or take up an outdoor winter sport.
- Clean up. The holidays can turn your environment upside down, between decorations, moving things around to accommodate guests, or simply being too busy to straighten up. Getting organized and removing clutter may help you refocus and feel more at peace. If it saddens you to put the decorations away, find some small items to alternate as accents that will help you mark each period of time in its own way.
- Detoxify. Feeling the effects of too many toasts and holiday desserts? Drink less booze, drink more water, and try to eat healthier overall. Do the things that make you feel invigorated rather than sluggish, bloated, and weighted down. January is a good time to recommit to taking the best possible care of yourself. It’s the perfect occasion to make wellness-check appointments with your doctors and dentist (just having those dates scheduled on your calendar makes you more accountable to your good health).
- Join a club. Meet new people based on an interest you have. If you don’t know where to begin, check out Meetup.com, plug in your zip code, and see what kinds of groups exist in your area.
- Begin a spiritual practice. Learn more about religion, take up prayer, begin meditation, or simply choose to practice gratitude on a regular basis. Discover a new means of realizing peace within yourself.
- Choose to embrace the year ahead. Look forward. You can’t drive your car if you’re solely focused on the rearview mirror. Pledge to not stay stuck in what once was. Imagine in great detail what you want the year to bring you, and think about what action steps you can take to make those things happen.
If you’re relieved the holidays are over, take some time to recoup and recharge, and then enjoy plugging back into your regular routine.
© Copyright 2017 GoodTherapy.org. All rights reserved. Permission to publish granted by Laurie Leinwand, MA, LPC, GoodTherapy.org Topic Expert
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