Ok, so the holidays are over…now what? It can be a hard question to answer because we have a love/hate relationship with the holidays. For some, the holidays are really stressful. We see friends and family (if it’s safe to do so), we spoil each other with gifts and we ultimately spend a lot of time eating and drinking. Super fun, right? The short answer to the question is that you spend some time recovering from the holidays.
When they’re over, many of us feel the crash. I’ve been noticing this recently and have had mixed feelings. I’ve felt a sense of relief and newness since the holidays as passed. Part of the reason is because I get extremely overwhelmed and stressed. I feel like I have too many places to go, too many people to see and I’m always behind or rushing from one place to the next. At the same time, I kind of miss seeing all the people, having some extra time off from work and making other smile. So it got me thinking…
What are you thinking?
You might be feeling exactly like me, but I bet you’re feeling something. I thought it would make sense to talk about some of the feelings you might be experiencing and help you learn what to do next. Life is going to move with or without us and I think you’d rather be included than left behind. So, those feelings…
- Sadness – If you’re feeling sadness, just know you’re not alone. Many people LOVE the holidays and never want them to end. They love seeing their friends and family, love the celebrations that happen, love to eat all the food and drink all the drinks. When it’s over, it can feel like a huge let down.
- Relief – If you’re feeling relief, you in my boat. I love the holidays, but I’m glad when they’re over because I can go back to what I consider normal. I bet you understand what I’m talking about. Those low-key days and nights, no more pressure behind finding the right present and getting away from all the so-called obligations.
- Longing – When the holidays are done, there can be a sense of longing for what’s next. You might be looking at the calendar trying to find the next big event to look forward to, to decorate for and this feeling of not knowing leads to a sense of feeling lost. Yes, there is a lull after the holidays, but that sense of longing allows for opportunities.
- Hope – With a new year beginning, a sense of hope is natural. We get excited for the potential and the possibilities that are coming for us in the future. With that hope, comes excitement. The unknown that comes with the longing also comes with hope because we have a chance to manifest, plan and dream.
- Avoidance – This one is tough because I’ve been there. During the holidays, we spend a lot of time with people. If you’re somewhat of an introvert, you may want to have a little alone time. Instead of “peopling”, you take a break from spending time with others. It’s not a bad way to let your anxiety settle and recover.
So what do you do now?
If you’re feeling any of the feelings I mentioned above, and others, there are a few things you can do. These are things I put on my To Do List every year in January because it helps me feel like I get my life back. It’s how I’ve been recovering from the holidays in years that have passed and how I’ll do it moving forward.
The first thing you should start doing is find a routine. Think about creating a new habit for yourself. Maybe waking up 15 minutes early every day or reading for an hour per day. If you want something that’s more recurring, you could plan to move your body three times per week or treat yourself to something small, like coffee or flowers, each week. Having a routine is the best activity to get your life back to normal.
The second thing to start doing is to plan for what’s ahead. Even if you look at the calendar and you don’t see anything, make something up. What’s a goal you want to accomplish by the end of the month? Focus on that and plan how to accomplish it. You could also think about your best friend’s birthday and start prepping for a fun night out. The summer will be here before you know it too, so don’t forget those beach trips and BBQs.
The last thing I want you to start doing is to look for the gratitude in the present. Every day, there is something to be grateful for. A cup of coffee on a cold day, someone holding the door for you when you’re entering a building or even someone letting you go ahead of them at a green light. Every day, look for things that make you smile or bring you joy and write them down. The gratitude that you find will help you to keep moving forward.