Post-holiday blues can make returning to work after the holidays can make going back to your routine seem stressful. According to the National Alliance on Mental Illness, 64% of people with a mental health diagnosis find this period stressful. Still, they are definitely not alone as post-holiday blues can affect anyone.
What are Post-holiday Blues?
Post-holiday blues is that feeling of depression you get after the holidays. You may experience insomnia, low energy, irritability, difficulty concentrating and feel anxious. While most people get over post-holiday blues relatively quickly, if you continue to experience these symptoms, talk to a mental health professional as you may be depressed or experiencing seasonal affective disorder.
What Causes Post-Holiday Blues?
Many different factors can cause the low feeling you get after the holidays. If you are like many people, you have dealt with a lot of stressed and been on an emotional rollercoaster since before Thanksgiving, and the brain needs time to recover.
Your diet has likely taken a significant hit.
Many people drink more alcohol and eat more sugar-rich foods during the holidays than they do the rest of the year. Your brain reacts to these things, and it needs time to recover.
You are wired to thrive on routine.
Yet, you have probably gone to many parties and spent time with friends and family. Many people find that their sleep routine gets disrupted during the holidays.
How Can You Get Back to Normal?
The great news is that getting back to normal often involves the things you do naturally 11 months out of the year. Start by making yourself go to bed and get up regularly. If you are not used to getting eight hours of sleep nightly, make that a priority throughout the coming year.
Eat a Healthy Diet
Concentrate on eating a healthy diet. You might experience some sugar cravings if you ate a lot of sweet things during the holidays. Realize that these will pass if you do not give in to temptation. Eating a diet high in Vitamin D can help replace the nutrient you usually get from the sun during warmer months.
Give Yourself a Treat
One of the best things you can do is give yourself something to look forward to doing at the end of January or during the first couple of weeks of February. This helps you have something to keep you motivated and helps to stop you from going into social isolation during the cold winter months, which can be depressing. When possible, avoid social isolation by planning a trip or other event with friends.
Many people let their exercise routine go during the winter holiday period. Now is a great time to pick it back up again. When possible, exercise outdoors, even for just a few minutes. Exercise helps produce serotonin in the body, naturally boosting your mood.
If you find that your post-holiday blues do not seem to go away, then reach out to American Behavioral Clinics. We are here to help you in every way possible.