- The holidays are a period of high emotional intensity. Transitioning out of that and back into the “normal” pace of life can feel challenging.
- Taking time away from work – whether a week or a few days – engages our tendency to evaluate and check our perspectives. What did you learn from your break (or lack of break)?
- Below are some ideas for how to move through the intense emotions and transition that the holiday season might have brought up for you.
Even though 2022 has turned over into 2023, we are still transitioning into the New Year. Like most changes in our lives, a day or an hour usually does not allow for all the necessary time for the newness or transition to settle in. This blog post will discuss challenges that might crop up for you or loved ones during the post-holiday season and provide options for managing.
The holidays are a period of high emotional intensity. Whether the emotions you were feeling were leaning positive or negative or something else, it is likely that your mind was being engaged in different ways than it is during the rest of the year. This is the result of routines being changed, shifts in the people that we are seeing, and the anticipation of starting a new year. The onset of these changes happens relatively quickly – the last two weeks of the year – and the pace at which they retreat is the same, if not more intense.
It can be a challenge for our minds and bodies to endure this period of emotional highs and lows, especially when society expects for us to immediately return to normalcy – the mundane schedules and environments of our work, school, home – as if nothing has happened. Below are some ideas for how to ease yourself out of the emotional intensity of the holiday season:
- Acknowledge how you are experiencing this holiday come-down. Examine where in your body feelings of intensity might live – take yourself through a body scan if you would find that helpful: https://www.mindful.org/beginners-body-scan-meditation/. Examine what memories or moments you are clinging to from this holiday season.
- If you are saying goodbye to people or places during this transition, consider the ways that you might sustain your relationships after separating. Ways of doing this include, but are not limited to: schedule a phone call during your first two weeks away from one another to check in on the distance; take photos or videos of the places that you are leaving so that you can revisit those memories.
- Allow your transition back to normalcy to go at a pace that works for you. We all have social expectations placed on us, but we are also allowed to hold expectations of ourselves – find ways throughout your day to check-in with yourself and evaluate what needs you might be having.
The holidays and the immediate post-New Years season might be bringing up feelings or memories that you are feeling challenged by. Know that this is normal, and that asking for help in processing is normal too.