The post-holiday blues are common after any holiday, but there are some ways to stop them from getting the best of you. Nobody wants to think about emails, deadlines, or attending meetings, especially after returning from a long and restful break.
To help you through this tricky time, we’ve compiled a list of tips to make your back to work transition a little smoother and stress-free.
Keep the Holiday Spirit Alive
A big part of the post-holiday blues is missing the feeling of joy and excitement you felt in the lead up to the break. To keep the blues away, try to find ways to keep that joy alive around the workplace, whether you’re still working from home or in the office. Knowing post-holidays can be especially tricky, consider leaving the decorations up a little longer to keep up the momentum. Perhaps if you received a practical gift such as a diary, an ergonomic mouse pad, or a piece of equipment from your office Secret Santa you can use it after returning back to work to feel inspired and be more productive.
We’ve all done it: started the new year with a list of good intentions, but those goals are often abandoned before the Christmas decorations come down. During your first few days back at work, consider sketching out your goals for the year and building a strategy. Whatever your goals are, getting started and taking action will provide you with a sense of satisfaction and achievement, which will automatically improve your mood and reflect into your personal and professional life.
Make a List
Ease yourself into work gradually instead of diving in without a proper strategy. Spend some time on your to-do list when you first return back to work, so you have a plan of action ready to follow. This should include a brief list of practical activities that need to be completed in the first day or two, as well as a list of long-term initiatives that need to be managed. There’s something therapeutic about jotting down all of your responsibilities on a to-do list. Having everything in writing stimulates and inspires us to really get things done, and the beginning of the New Year is the ideal moment to do it.
It’s a brand new year, and the realisation that you won’t be getting another extended break for months is probably the cause of your post-holiday blues. Instead, try to get involved in some team-building activities like a potluck, quiz night, or even check out some stand-up comedy. These activities will make you laugh, increase morale, and bring you closer to work colleagues.
Add a Little Decoration
According to the Association for Psychological Science, whether you are working from the office or home, creating a more personalised workspace can uplift your mood and push away those post-holiday blues. Try to keep your workstation clear of clutter, papers, and piles of books to help you focus and be more productive. Make sure your workspace is ergonomically designed for sitting or standing in between tasks. Simple additions like photos of your loved ones (maybe a snap from your last holiday), travel souvenirs, or plants can instantly raise your spirits.
Catch up with your Workmates
When you first get back to work, avoid spending the entire day on your chair as you might feel burnout by three o’clock. Breaks are especially crucial when dealing with post-holiday blues as they help rejuvenate the brain. Break up the work by popping out for lunch and having a nice post-holiday catch-up with your work colleagues. There’s a good chance that you’ve both been eating left-over ham and turkey for too long, why not treat yourselves to a takeaway lunch or breakfast while trading holiday stories and relishing the memories.