6 Strategies To Cope With Post Holiday Blues

Empty road to upcoming 2017 against the big cloudsThe first week back to work after the holidays can be rough. The next vacation or holiday feel a million miles away. So, what can you do to make things more pleasant?

1) Ease back into your routine

The months before the holidays are usually a flurry of activity. Getting back into the grind of working feels somewhat ‘off’. Don’t pressure yourself to be perfectly back on schedule. Give yourself a few weeks to get back into the swing of things.

2) Resolve to not resolve

January brings with it societal/personal pressure to make and keep New Year’s resolutions. Certainly, getting fit, losing weight, saving money, etc. are admirable goals. The problem is – 71% of people fall off the New Year’s Resolution wagon the first two weeks. Cut yourself some slack and don’t try to do everything at once. You aren’t going to go from binging on Christmas cookies for weeks to being satisfied with just carrots. Set goals, but start small. For instance, “this week I will bring fresh fruit as a snack instead of going to the vending machine every afternoon.”

3) Create a “look forward to” date

Having something on the calendar to anticipate can really help on those days when you’re dragging. Think about the last time you planned a vacation. Half the fun isn’t the vacation itself – it’s the time planning, talking about it and reminiscing after. Your event doesn’t have to break the bank either. Sign up for a cooking class, buy tickets to a concert or sporting event, make a reservation for a new restaurant, etc. Pick something fun and meaningful to you.

4) Perception is everything

For most of the country, the weather is cold, gloomy and dark. Going to work and driving home in the dark can take a toll. However, it’s all in the way you look at it. December 21st (the first day of Winter) was the shortest day of the year. We actually gain sunlight from that day forward. Counting down until Spring is a start to putting the reality into perspective. Try this countdown calculator. Use it to count down until Spring and/or the next fun thing you have planned.

5) Commit to self care

You’ve heard it before, but it bears repeating. Proper sleep and a good diet make a world of difference in your mood. Stop surfing the web and checking your phone an hour before bedtime. Disconnect, relax and make time to wind down at the end of every day. Even going to be 15 minutes earlier can make a difference.

6) Wallowing allowed (in moderation)

There are plenty of perky self-help articles that encourage embracing everything about the new year and a fresh start. However, if you’re feeling guilty about being blue, reading those essays can make you feel even worse. It’s OK to not jump for joy about being back to work after the holidays. Those feelings are normal. All you need are the strategies to get back into the work groove. If you continue to feel down after a few weeks, you may want to talk to someone. For most people though, you can make minor adjustments in your life to get past this.

A version of this post, by our Social Media Specialist, also appears on LinkedIn.

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A version of this post, by our Social Media Specialist, also appears on LinkedIn.


Oldcastle is North America’s largest manufacturer of building products and materials. With more than 2,000 locations throughout North America, we are in constant pursuit of the next generation of successful decision makers, leaders and problem solvers. Learn more about joining the Oldcastle team HERE.

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