After a fun and relaxing time off work over Christmas and break from routine, it's normal to feel a little flat when you arrive back at work. But it doesn't have to linger and can actually be a great catalyst to set yourself up for a better year ahead.
Reframe your thinking and language
Post-holiday blues is ultimately all about your mindset. Feeling blue about being back at work is not about your work, it's about what you're telling yourself about it.
When you focus on what you haven't got or aren't doing, it will just send you into a negative nose dive. So reframe your thinking to find the positive in your situation. You had a holiday. Many didn't. You have a job to return to. Many don't. You have some brilliant memories of fun times... there's a lot more you can be grateful for than complain about. So check what you're focusing on and the language you're using as it only reinforces your blues.
Instead of statements such as "I hate being back at work", reframe into the positive, "I loved my holiday, although I am so grateful to be back at work enjoying life, and planning my next adventure" or "I had such a great holiday. When can when we catch up for a coffee so I can share all my wonderful experiences?"
Holidays often involve consuming more than we burn. We don't always realise we've got a bit sluggish or put on a few inches until we try to fit back into clothes we wore pre-holiday. Exercise is the best way to get back into the full swing of life and shred any of the festive weight you packed on. The endorphins released during exercise are a powerful tonic for beating the blues.
Make your bucket list for your year (and life) ahead
Getting away from your work and your everyday routine is a powerful way to get a little perspective on your life. Sometimes returning to work can remind you of what you're not happy about. So before you slip back into 'same old, same old', write down a list of things that excite you... what you really want to be doing -- professionally, personally -- in the year to come and beyond.
Having exciting goals and projects is a great way to beat any blues.
People who love what they do don't suffer from post-holiday blues, so if you're struggling with your lot in life, take a hard look at what you can do to feel better about your future. Having exciting goals and projects -- returning to study, a housing reno, running a marathon, a new hobby -- is a great way to beat any blues.
Plan your next trip
In line with the above, it's great to start working on your next holiday. Having another holiday on the horizon, even if it won't be for quite a while, can help you 'get back into the saddle' at work or school. Just the act of putting time aside for your next holiday adventure can lift the spirit.
Declutter your life
Living out of a suitcase can make you realise just how little you actually need. So before you lose your inspiration, take a look around your house, wardrobe, office and clean out all the excess 'stuff', clothes and clutter to make a little space in your life for new things to flow in. You might even sell items on eBay in order to make money for the next trip.
Don't lose holiday mode
Don't relinquish the things you love about being on holiday. Treat yourself to a great coffee. Get a summer read for the weekend. Plan a fun night out with friends. Head to the beach or a park after work and make the most of the summer evenings. Just because you're back into work mode doesn't mean you can't keep enjoying some of the things you did on your break.
Margie Warrell is the founder of Live Brave Day.