What to do about Holiday Blues?

We’ve all experienced that feeling where we can’t wait for our holiday. We count down the months, days, minutes and seconds from the moment we book it. And then...the day arrives. We’re so excited for our holiday we happily go through hell to get there! We get up at stupid O’clock. We make our way to the airport. Like little ants we patiently walk in lines, checking our bag in, going through security, waiting for the plane. Every second knowing we are taking one step closer to our holiday destination...nothing else matters!
THEN you arrive! As you take your first step out of the aeroplane the warm air hits you! Instantly your energy lifts. The excitement to get to your accommodation, drop your bags and hit the beach or bar is uncontainable.

Maybe you’ll just chill by the pool, maybe the beach, maybe a boat trip, maybe an excursion. Where will you eat? What will you do tomorrow? Who cares! You’re on holiday and you can do whatever you want!

You take hundreds of beautiful photos and post them on Facebook making all your friends jealous!

But then....the time comes. The holiday is over. It’s the last day. Making your way to the airport when departing is not as exciting as when you were arriving. You wish you could close your eyes, open them and just be home. The thought of lining up like ants, queue after queue fills you with dread...and perish the thought of a delay. You could actually kill someone!

Photo from Google

At best you may be looking forward to getting back home, but for others the end of a holiday can actually bring on the feeling of real post holiday depression! We put these bad feelings down to the fact our holiday is over. So we book another holiday for the following year and start the whole process again of counting down the months, days, minutes and seconds.

But what else can you do? There are many other factors that contribute to the holiday blues.

The following 5 tips are obvious but I’ve had to learn them the hard way!

1. Don’t go straight back to work!
It’s tempting to want to spend as much time as you can abroad, arriving back late in the evening and back at work the very next day. I’ve done this! Believe me it undoes the whole purpose of your holiday! You will feel more tired than you did before your holiday.

2. Don’t underestimate jet lag...even if you haven’t been that far!
According to Dr Peter Pendergast of Venus Medical it takes a few days to adjust after being in a different time zone. The disrupted rhythm results in a host of unpleasant symptoms, including tiredness, headache, disorientation, poor concentration and indigestion.

3. Drink plenty of water!
This may sound boring for some of you but from day one of your holiday drink at least 2 litres of water a day. The heat, alcohol (Some of us tend to drink more alcohol during our holiday...because we are on holiday!) and salty foods cause dehydration. Flying also contributes to dehydration! So it’s probable you’ll arrive at your destination dehydrated and return even more dehydrated!

4. Stay in the now!
We have a tendency to hate our lives when we get back! We hate work, we hate the rain, we hate the traffic, we hate the hussle and bustle etc etc. We look back at our holiday photos and we wish our holiday lasted a little bit longer. In fact we want to move there!

’Let’s buy a house!’ (Rich coming from me hey!)

Escapism can be a good strategy sometimes but if we allow it to overtake our lives it can be very unhealthy and actually cause depression.
Stay in the moment. Even during dark times, if you look you will see something that makes you smile.

5. Reflect!
What were you doing on holiday that made you feel good? Eating healthier? Sleeping more? Walking more? Reading more?  Being barefooted?  Spending more time alone? Spending more time with loved ones? Working less? On your phone less?

You don’t need to wait for next years holiday to repeat that experience.

Yes, our work commitments may make if difficult to embrace the slower pace enjoyed while on holiday, but there may be changes you can incorporate in your daily life, which may help to improve how you feel. Look at the areas of your life that need more or less attention and make the changes necessary.

Focus on small joys, the little things in life that brighten your day and warm your spirit. Make the changes needed to be happy all year round  😊 

Written by Eleni Nicolaou