Ah, that back to school feeling.
With more and more people taking time off all the way into September, it feels like our holiday blues are only getting stronger and easily slide into October.
Some of us feel guilty about it, others just well confused about how to get back into our best driven-selves.
I am not going to sugar-coat it here: coming back to work after summer vacation can be dreadful.
Sadness and anxiety begin to creep up on you because during your holidays you have a temporary departure from your responsibilities and obligations.
On holiday you may put into the day many fun activities than you would in ‘normal’ routine days, so when you stop doing these things, you start noticing the difference.
‘Normal’ routine days are usually filled with activities that are necessary such as cooking, cleaning, paying the bills, go to work, school runs and so on, and while all of these activities can give you a sense of achievement, the amount of pleasure you get from them isn’t nothing in comparison to the pleasure and enjoyment you got from your holiday.
Do you find yourself day-dreaming about your past holiday?
Instead of planning your next big trip and living for your next break, consider what it is your holiday gave you, that your daily life perhaps doesn’t.
Deeba from Deeba Anandan, transformational coach, shares some of her favourite questions: “Did your holiday give you time for yourself that you are lacking between work and your family? Did it give you a chance to escape a job that you hate? Did it create more adventure in your life? Once you are clear on this, work out how you can give yourself more of what you need on a daily basis If you crave more adventure in your life, how can you add this to your weeks now rather than waiting for a holiday? If you are miserable in your job, why is this and what needs to change?”
Especially when you are busy building your empire, holidays feel like a treat more than a right – if you have had a wonderfully restful time on holiday, going back to a busy work schedule, waking up early every day, looking after the kids, add onto that a huge pile of work to get through looming in the background… it can suddenly all seem very overwhelming.
Having to get back into the routine can be pretty daunting and not forget exhausting, BUT there are few ways you can turn ‘post-holiday blues’ mentality around (yes, it’s all about the mindset).
It all comes back to self-care
Prioritising your self-care is also paramour, especially when having to deal with hand-overs and inboxes. The biggest mistake we can make is jumping back on the work wagon without taking the appropriate time to get back into our routine. Life coach Kiran Singh adds “Give yourself a week to wind down (if you don’t have a week, a day or two would do) Spend this time with the intention to rest and recover, practicing self-love and self-care”.
This can also be a great time to assess where you want to go next, Singh adds “Make a list of things you want and things you don’t want – get it out of your system. This will not only give you clarity but also make it easier for you to prioritise what really matters to you.”
The importance of rest and friends
There are other ways you can get clarity, and one of them is not neglecting your rest.
“Get plenty of sleep – try to go to bed at a specific time each night” adds Mays Al-Ali from HealthyMays.com “Being well-rested can improve your mood and help you feel ready to take on the day at work – aim for at least 8 hours sleep a day and try to sleep by 10pm every day. Then get up early ahead of work and incorporate a meditation practice in your day, this will help boost your mood and reduce daily anxiety and stress.”
One of the best things about being on holiday is being around people, and coming back to reality can be the worst thing for social butterflies.
Making sure to take some time for socialising when back home is essential: “Take some of what made you feel good during those times and to continue doing that the days and months afterward” suggests Mays Al-Ali “For example, if you really enjoyed having lots of social plans and looked forward to being out and about with other people, make sure to plan something in your local area – go to the movies, theatres, museums, exhibitions with friends and family and keep yourself entertained and excited about future plans.”
If you are craving a different type of time, also known as alone time, make sure you find ways to do that outdoors: “Spend time outdoors – I don’t do this enough myself, but when I do, I feel absolutely amazing. Going for a long walk with a cup of pumpkin-spiced latte and autumn music playing in my ears while looking at the beauty of mother nature changing – pure bliss!” shares Singh.
Connect with your body
It’s not all about feelings – our body gets stressed too.
When you get back to work, you’re putting more strain on your brain, particularly the prefrontal cortex that controls the emotional responses to stress by regulating the amygdala.
If you’re suddenly faced with an onset of anxiety and sadness at work and you want to find some quick remedies to help at the moment, Dr. Bryan Bruno suggests pushing a wall.
Dr. Bryan Bruno is the Medical Director at Mid City TMS, a New York-based medical center focused on treating anxiety and depression, shares a top tip that can assist you in relieving pressure and releasing feel-good hormones: “Let your anxiety out by pushing up against a wall or other hard surface. It sounds strange, but take this moment to push as hard as you can as if you’re going to break it and then stop. This is similar to how a hug works. You’re giving your body concise pressure and then releasing. This kind of quick release of pressure can immediately make you feel more relaxed.”
Are you looking for more ways to release stress and encourage self-care? Check this article for more inspiration.