Some people take their decorations down the day after Christmas.
Some hold on just a bit longer.
I am one who likes to let the holidays linger. Sometimes, it seems like Christmas and the New Year end too suddenly. The music stops, the greetings are all given, the gifts are opened and all that is left is the bleakness of winter. Are you finding it hard to pick your life back up after the celebrations and festivities have ended? Here are some ways to ease back into everyday life.
Learn a winter sport. My family really dislikes the snow, but we live in a state that boasts “the greatest snow on earth.” So, last year, my husband decided to embrace the snow and find something to do in it. None of us are fans of skiing or snowboarding, but hubby picked up cross-country skiing. He outfitted himself for under $100 and learned the basics in the field outside our house. He now looks forward to the snow so he can use his skis.
I’m still not convinced that being cold and wet is fun, so I am focusing on indoor sports. Racquetball, spin classes and even bowling are things I avoid in the summer because I feel guilty being inside when the weather is beautiful, but now I can have fun inside (where it’s warm) without the guilt. Bottom line: find something you enjoy doing during the winter months so you can look forward to them.
Start working on your resolutions. Once you have celebrated last year’s successes and triumphs, focus your attention on what you hope to accomplish this year. There is no better way to motivate yourself to get going again than to set goals. Map out your plan and start working on your goals as soon as you’ve recovered from ringing in the New Year.
My goal for next year is to run a 10k. I have already started posting daily updates on my Instagram to hold me accountable and have planned some 5k’s to keep me motivated for my big race. I’m excited to make progress. I have something to look forward to doing every day even though the holidays are over.
Plan a vacation. For hubby and me, our gift to each other this Christmas was a vacation. We’ve planned to go after the holidays so we have something to get excited about and look forward to. We had a fun Christmas, but we were almost more excited for it to be over so we can go on our trip.
If you live someplace cold, go someplace warm. If you live someplace warm, go someplace to enjoy the snow or winter weather. Knowing you are going somewhere fun after the holidays will definitely fight any post-holiday blues.
Celebrate all the winter holidays. I know Christmas and the New Year are the “big deals” during winter, but there are other holidays that occur from January to March -- President’s Day, Martin Luther King Day, Valentine’s Day, St. Patrick’s Day ... Make big deals out of these holidays.
Teach your kids about Martin Luther King, Jr. Make crafts and do fun, themed games (I definitely see Lincoln Logs in my kids’ future). Make handmade Valentine’s for coworkers and friends. Celebrate silly holidays like “Send a card to a friend day” on February 7th and “National potato chip day” on March 14th. There are plenty of weird holidays to help fill your days with things to do.
Don’t put all the holiday music away. Songs like “Winter Wonderland,” “Let it Snow,” and “Baby It’s Cold Outside” are not about Christmas but rather the cold winter weather. There is no reason to put those songs away along with the traditional Christmas music. Take half a day to make a playlist of winter-themed songs to keep during the winter months. This will help you ease back into regular music instead of just cutting off the festive tunes on December 26th.
It can be hard letting go of the holidays after we’ve built them up for months. Even as adults, the excitement of Christmas is very real, and saying goodbye makes us a bit melancholy. But try some of these ideas, and start your New Year fresh and focused -- with many things to look forward to!
(Megan Shauri graduated with a bachelors in Anthropology and a masters in Psychology. She is a mother of twins. Contact her at Meganshauri@gmail.com.)