Surviving the Holiday Hangover
The presents have been opened, the toasts have been made, and the meals have been demolished. You had a great holiday season. Now instead of feeling satisfied, you are feeling a little let down. Your bank account is screaming for mercy and so is the waistband of your jeans. You are exhausted. The only thing you have to look forward to is a cold grey January. This is a holiday hangover.
Dealing with Regret
The number one feeling that comes with any hangover is regret. The euphoric feeling you got from buying that perfect gift or eating just one more chocolate chip cookie is gone. In its place, the bitter seed of regret takes root in the pit of your stomach.
If only I hadn’t…I should have just… The shoulda, coulda, woulda game messes with your head as you wrap one more layer on to head off into the cold, grey dawn.
First, STOP IT! Wallowing in a pool of self-pity will not help. If you enjoyed the cookies and the look on the persons face when they opened the present, ENJOY IT. Let the thought of their smile bring a smile to your face. Let the memory of those delicious cookies give you something to look forward to next year.
The next step is to make a plan. Have a goal planning day (I love these!) and get everything in order to tackle the new year with vigor.
The Emotional Hangover
If you are a holiday person maybe you don’t regret the extra cookies or the money spent, but still, you feel empty. What’s going on? An emotional hangover might be the answer. After all the excitement of the holiday season, suddenly there is nothing to get excited about. The holiday lights are gone, the smell of pine in the air is gone, and that special feeling everyone seems to have around the holidays is gone. This sudden change of feeling can be just as jarring to some people as waking up after a two-bottle of wine night.
There can be a sense of loss after the holidays and you might be asking yourself, well, now what?
A great way to get yourself feeling a little better about life is to volunteer. Many organizations are flooded with donations and volunteers during the holidays and then come January, nothing. Find an organization you can get excited about and see how you can help.
People and parties and presents, oh my! The holiday season can be exhausting. I swear I ran my dishwasher twice a day for a week, and that was only because I was too tired to do it a third time! Three to six weeks of solid running and holiday cheer can wear out anyone. If you are an introvert like me, just being around that many people can be exhausting. Honestly, I was doing a mini-celebration when everyone went back to work and school.
To combat exhaustion, be it mental or physical, you are going to need some quiet time. Talk to your family and see if you can come up with a plan to get you a little more rest and time alone. Your two-year-old might not understand that mommy needs a break but your husband does. If you both need a break, take turns. One of you take the littles out for a day of fun one day, and the other can do the same the next.
Whatever happens, be sure to take care of yourself so you can continue to take care of everyone else.
Time Heals the Holiday Hangover
Just like an alcoholic hangover, time will heal your holiday hangover. There will be more to get excited about. There will be time to steal a few quiet minutes to rest and relax. Chances are, you will even do something new you can regret sometime in the next year. Just remember to keep moving forward instead of looking backward.