How to Deal with the Post Holiday Blues

man alone

People of all ages and backgrounds suffer from post holiday blues. Discover a few simple ways to combat post holiday depression and find joy in each day.

If you are feeling post holiday blues, you are not alone. Many people find the time after hectic holiday preparations is a major letdown. Post holiday depression might set in after the gifts are opened and the last Christmas cookie is eaten. Discover a few simple ways to get through the post holiday blues and find hope in the New Year.

Take it Down a Notch

Some people prepare for the holidays for months before the big day. The celebration seems to be over in a few minutes then you are left with the clean-up. Take it down a notch next year. Do you really need to make crafts for everyone in your kid's class? Did you have to put up four Christmas trees in every room? Resolve to keep the holidays in context in the future. Focus on cleaning up and setting goals for the New Year rather than the fact Christmas is over. After all, the joy and spirit of Christmas should be in our hearts each day.

Learn Something New

Did you always want to learn a second language? Have you promised yourself to read the Bible from cover-to-cover? Now is the time to learn something new. Instead of focusing on what was, think of what could be. Imagine yourself in a new career then take steps to make it happen. Register for a winter class at your local community course. Sign up for an online course about something you're interested in. Learning something new takes your mind off the post holiday blues. As we learn more, we can give more to the world around us and feel more valued as a result.

Volunteer Your Time

The rewards of volunteering your time are priceless. Bring joy into someone else's life by giving the gift of yourself. Banish the post holiday blues by keeping the season of giving going all year round. Offer to serve people at the local soup kitchen or shelter. Visit a children's hospital with a few books to read to the kids. Bring meals to housebound people who are elderly or ill. Become a Big Brother or Big Sister to a teen who needs guidance and love. You're sure to feel better about yourself and life - and so will the people you help.

Look Forward to More Good Times

Often we don't get to reach out to everyone during the fast-paced holiday season. Send a letter to a long lost friend or call a cousin you haven't spoken to in ages. Plan a party for Valentine's Day to show everyone how much you love them. Treat yourself to something you like, such as a movie and dinner or manicure and pedicure. If nobody is available to join you, learn how to spend quality time having fun with yourself. Besides, you never know who you might meet along the way. Read about ways to spend Christmas alone and bring these tips into each day of the New Year to feel happier.

Cash In Your Rewards

If you shop for the holidays online, you are likely to belong to several rewards programs. Check your balances and cash in your loyalty points for gift cards, merchandise and other goodies you would like. After buying great stuff for everyone else, this is a way to treat yourself to something special. Almost every retailer has its own loyalty program, including local shops and mass merchants. If you own a business, create your own loyalty program to reward dedicated customers. We can include the spirit of giving in our business world as well as our personal lives.

Take Time Out

Promise to spend fifteen quiet minutes on yourself each day. Take a long, hot shower or bath. Meditate or say a prayer to release your stress and embrace the positive aspects in your life. Go for a brisk walk around the block to observe the natural sights and sounds all around you. Attend Mass during the week. A little time out after the frenetic pace of Christmas preparations can really help you get over the post holiday blues. Simply thank Him for the basic pleasures in life. You don't have to be in a state of constant exuberance from Christmas Eve through New Years Day. Strive to achieve inner peace instead.

Talk to a Priest or a Pro

If you have persistent feelings of depression, fatigue and dismay, you might want to talk to your doctor about them. Some people suffer from seasonal affective disorder. This means their depression coincides with the winter season. Your doctor might recommend a few of the above methods to perk up your mood. If you feel downtrodden after the holidays, discuss it with your pastor. Your mood can improve by simply airing and validating your feelings.

Don't let the post holiday blues bring you down. Focus on the hope and blessings of the year ahead instead. After all, Christmas is supposed to encourage us to be thankful and celebrate new life. Bring that message into your own life rather than focusing on the commercialism promoted by the media during the holiday season. He brings us great joy when we reach out to receive it!