How To Move Past The Post Holiday Blues

Post holiday blues talk to a career counsellor

Returning to work in the New Year can leave a lot of us with the post holiday blues. Getting used to the routine of early starts, jostling for a seat on public transport and spending long days back at the office doesn’t seem nearly as much fun as our holiday was. Well guess what? It probably isn’t! But there are many things you can do to extend the feel good effects of your holiday and ease your way back into the work routine.

Here are some of our best tips:

1. When planning your holiday dates make sure you allow for a day or two at home before returning to work. This provides some time to adjust from relaxing and having fun, gives time to spruce up the house and get organised for the year to come. If you haven’t done that this time, keep in mind for the next holiday.

2. Start planning your next holiday. It doesn’t have to be another whole year away. Research shows that planning a holiday can have the same effects on your positive mental health and well-being as actually going on a holiday so get planning today!

3. While on holidays you may have had amazing clarity of thought. Great ideas may have popped into your head when you were relaxed and least expected it, solutions to hard problems may have come more easily and been incredibly clear. You, indeed, may have made some big decisions and set some clear goals about how things are going to be (different or better) this year. They may have excited you! Now is the time to put those ideas, thoughts, and clear ‘ways forward’ into action. Plan them, diarize them, set up meetings to explore them. Put simply, move the exciting idea into an action.

4. On your return to work make sure you look after yourself properly. No one can give their best (or fight the post holiday blues) when they are mentally, physically or emotionally running on empty. Professor Victor Strecher from the University of Michigan suggests positive mental health and wellbeing is influenced by 5 things. He uses the acronym S.P.A.C.E as a neat little way to remember it all:

Presence (mindfulness/meditation/quiet breathing time and reflection),
Activity (exercise, sports, physical movement),
Creativity (pursuing an interest where you can create, make, explore), and
Eating (nutrition).

So, make sure you make time to do things for YOU. This leads nicely into our next point.

5. Plan things to look forward to regularly in your work and everyday life and make time for them. Good times don’t only happen on holidays. In our career counselling sessions, we encourage people to strive for professional happiness. We spend too much of our lives at work to just tolerate that time. Find ways to enjoy working. We promise with effort this IS possible!

The post holiday blues don’t normally last that long. It’s simply a period of readjustment and settling back into a routine.

But if your discontent with being back at work lasts longer than a few weeks it may be time to examine the underlying causes of what’s making you unhappy and consider making major career changes. You can start by talking to a career counsellor or an executive coach.

If you would like the advice of a professional career counsellor or executive coach to better understand whether you should be moving jobs or employer or whether it is just a bout of the post holiday blues then give us a call and book an appointment today – 1800 284 255 or email us here – We work nationally across Australia and have career counsellors and executive coaches in Perth, Adelaide, Melbourne, Sydney, Brisbane and Far North Queensland.

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