Bright lights, seasonal food, and Christmas movies are playing non-stop on TV while you stress trying to figure out if the gifts you’re purchasing will be delivered in time... Not only is it an anxiety-filled time, but it is also one of the most joyous times of the year. Getting to be around family you may not see often, exploring different festive activities, and being able to take in the seasonal attributes that come with it.
Just like that in the blink of an eye, the Holiday season is over and now you’re feeling an empty void like something is missing or you just feel generally depressed and overwhelmed with emotion. What gives?
This is what has been often described as; ‘Post-Holiday Blues’ and you may have heard quite a lot about this or have/currently are experiencing this phenomenon as we speak.
In order to cure this seasonal depression, we must first understand exactly what post-holiday blues is and how it affects our daily lives.
What is Post-Holiday Depression?
There’s a general increase in excitement and joy leading into Thanksgiving and heading into Christmas as the seasonal moods tend to swing upward. Everyone is focused on giving and spreading cheer as families and friends start to come together to celebrate the Holiday season. A whirlwind of emotions always unpacks itself as anxiety can be a real trigger point for most people when it comes to shopping for gifts, planning trips, making sure they have events scheduled, and so on.
It can be tough to regulate the flow of emotional assets which is why the Holidays always go by so quickly. This becomes a big culprit as you realize that you have to go back to normal in the New Year.
Removing decorations, going back to work, and moving on to life to a regular standard… This can be incredibly depressing for most people as they come to the realization that the fun is over and how fast it truly went by without feeling like they got a moment to let it all sink in.
Financial restraints also play a large role in this generalized depression as you must factor in all the expenses for gifts and travel – it’s not easy checking your bank statement on January 2nd and re-allocating your budget for the next few months to equate how hard your wallet took a hit.
This is what is deemed as Post-Holiday Blues and while it isn’t considered clinical depression, there is a strong resemblance, but it is generally only seasonal and does not last well into the New Year.
Is Seasonal Depression Common?
While you may feel like you’re the only one going through this, it’s quite common for most people and because it’s not as debilitating – odds are, most people around you are feeling the same way, they just hide it well and put on a happy face.
Like everything good in life, it must come to an end at some point. It’s very normal to feel down and upset once something is over which goes the same for the end of a Holiday.
However, with the end comes great excitement and exhilaration for the next year. The anticipation of having to wait is what builds up these emotions in the first place.
How to Beat the Post-Holiday Blues
It’s now a New Year, and as much as it is annoying to hear -- It’s New Year, *sigh* new you. This is a time to concentrate on making the most of yourself. Setting goals to obtain, making a pact to help focus on your health and well-being, planning out vacations, and much more.
Your time to get organized is now, drop it down a gear and get rolling as you make a mission to take on 2023 with a full head of steam.
So, let’s look at 6 ways you can beat seasonal depression and bounce back better than ever.
#1 – Set Goals
There is no better way to get motivated than setting goals for yourself as you head into a clean slate, a fresh start, a new year.
Make your resolutions obtainable but also make yourself work for them. Don’t set unrealistic expectations for yourself that you know may not be achievable throughout the course of a year. There’s no better feeling than getting yourself on track but that comes with work and aligning your mentality with what you need to do for those goals to be successful.
Don’t be scared, you have full control over your life and how you plan on improving it – why not go outside of your normal comfort zone and work toward positive outcomes.
#2 – Start Dieting
Fun fact: a lot of seasonal depression and or general depression is formed by bad eating habits and a lack of nutritional needs. The plethora of festive foods and binge eating all those tasty dishes your family put together has most likely set you back quite a bit and you’re finding it harder to find the motivation to eat healthier.
Now that you don’t have to worry about all the temptations that come with the Holidays, you can focus on a more structured diet while still allowing yourself to have treats occasionally.
The better you eat, the better you feel; and by feeling better, you’re going to be much happier and more energized/motivated. Looking at the mirror and loving the way you look will improve your mood and sense of happiness much more than how guilty you feel after putting back trays of Christmas ham and baked pies galore.
#3 – Exercise More
There is no better feeling than being healthy and not feeling like you’ve just run a marathon after going up only 1 flight of stairs. Exercising more and starting a routine of working out will not only get you on the right track toward being healthier, but it’s going to improve your mood and motivation.
As you start to get on a routine, you’re going to notice some significant progress especially if you’re following step #2 and eating better. Seeing noticeable progression is just going to encourage you, even more, to keep working out and being healthy as the benefits start to show.
It’s not an overnight process but if you stay dedicated to making this a goal of yours, you will be much happier and feel better with every day that goes by.
#4 – Surround Yourself with Good
How you feel daily depends on who you surround yourself with. If you find yourself always being around negative people with toxic behavioral traits – it’s best to start looking for some new friends or acquaintances that can shed more positivity on your life.
Trying to overcome seasonal depression is going to be harder if you’re around people who are overbearing, negative, and don’t have a positive outlook on much of anything.
A great place to make new friends is in the gym as mostly everyone is there in the first place to help better themselves. Becoming friends with fellow gym members is a great way to boost your mood and keep you focused on achieving your goals.
#5 – Nutrient Supplementation
Post-Holiday Blues can be more detrimental if you have a nutrient deficiency. If you’re already feeling down, exhausted, and lethargic – it’s going to be worse if you aren’t giving your body the nutrients it needs. Many deficiencies lead to exhaustion and other health problems that you may not know about, so it’s important to incorporate supplementation such as daily multivitamins and other adaptogenic ingredients.
Start by taking an everyday multivitamin and get yourself on a routine of strengthening your health with adequate nutrient needs.
Adaptogens such as Ashwagandha can help improve stress levels as well, so you aren’t feeling as down and about with the Holidays ending.
NuEthix Formulations offers a wide range of dietary supplements that will fit any need you have and can be found here.
#6 – Self Care
Last, but not least, take care of yourself. If you’re going through stressful times and you’re feeling down, reach out and talk to someone who can help. Focus on mental health and getting on a path toward positivity.
Give yourself some time away or go do the things you’ve been longing to do but haven’t had much time for.
Take breaks when needed and allow yourself to also enjoy life and experience what it has to offer. Slowing down doesn’t mean you have less of a chance to achieve your goals, it just allows for balance and making sure you stay positive without feeling extra pressure or stress.
The Holidays may be over and you’re finding it hard to cope with the fact that it’s become a back-to-reality moment for you now moving forward but this is just a temporary feeling of sadness. As you start implementing each of the previous suggestions, you will eventually break out of this feeling and start to progress back into the normality of life with a ton of motivation for improving yourself.
The seasonal blues will run their course and you’re going to be more excited than ever as you start from a clean slate ready to look back at the same time again next year and see all of the progress you’ve made since the beginning.