Post-holiday depression. Is it really a thing? Well, of personal experience, like right now, it is. I’ve just spent close to a month in the US- I’ve been waking up in the mornings, next to my girlfriend who I was sharing a room with- and everyday has been an adventure! We have explored new places each day, seen new things, met new people, engaged in interesting conversations, we still trained and had somewhat of a routine- but our minds have been stimulated with new data from morning until night. Each day has been full of laughter, fun times, socially engageing and interesting moments.
A lot of people put all of thir eggs into one basket when it comes to the leadup of a big trip. Half of the fun is planning it and the excitement leading up to the adventure. You forget about life right here and right now and spend time talking about what’s yet to happen, planning it and thinking about it. When you get back from your trip, you don’t even have that. Instead, days are boring, quite lonely, and certainly less mentally stimulating and adventurous.
Ultimately you should come back from your vacation with a full tank of energy! Be ready to go and excited to work on your goals again. So, how can we manipulate ourselves to be in this state rather than feeling down and uninspired? What are some steps we can take to minimize post-holiday depression?
1. You are the captain of the ship. To master your mind you need to understand yourself. Realise where your mind is at and then put effort in to manipulating it to where you want it to be. If you feel yourself getting down after your vacation- take active steps towards getting out of this state.
2. Keep busy. Stay social. During a vacation you are often busy exploring and enjoying the day from morning til night. You fit in the amount of activities you would barely do in a week at home into each day. You have people around you the whole time and you don’t get much time to yourself. When you come home it’s therefor important to keep busy. Make plans with your friends; lunches, dinners or a brisk morning walk before work- remain social.
3. Sleep more, Train and Eat healthy- getting back into a healthier routine when you get home will help to alleviate feelings of sadness. Go for walks with your friends, train with friends or book yourself into a class. Exercise has been shown to increase endorphins in the brain and gives you a feeling of calm and happiness.
4. True happiness happens in moments. Find activities that helps you be in the now- in the moment. Exercise is a good form of meditation for many, also consider activities such as cooking or reading.
5. During your vacation I am sure you got plenty of fresh air. Make sure to not lock yourself inside when you get home. Get outside, even if it’s just a bit of sunlight during a lunch break. Get some sun and some fresh air.
6. Write down your goals to help you re-focus on where you are right now and where you want to be. Find purpose in every day and slowly work on your goals, one day at a time.
7. Book another holiday. That always seems to help. Don’t forget to focus on the present though and into making your time at home pleasant as possible. Don’t get stuck into chasing happiness and moments ahead of time. Life is happening right now.
With all that being said- this article has been a good instigator to get my mind back on track after my trip away. And with that, I will leave you for now- I’m off to catch up with some friends. Time to be social.