Healthy Ways to Handle a Holiday Burnout
Christmas can be a joyous occasion, it’s time to recharge your batteries and spend quality time with loved ones, but the pressure of the festive season can leave you feeling overwhelmed and burnt out.
Here's our advice on coping with the holiday burnout.
It’s easy to slack off on exercise when life gets busy, but that’s not wise. Even a short bout of exercise can get your heart pumping, the endorphins flowing, and in general, make you feel better about your whole day. Plus it will keep your days structured and motivated to carry on exercising throughout the holidays. So don’t pack away your bike, a social ride with mates could be just what you need. And if bike riding doesn’t fit in with your commitments, what about a nice walk with family or friends?
Dr Jansen states ‘Good sleep is essential for maintaining our baseline mental health, as one night of sleep deprivation can dramatically affect mood, the next day.’ When you’re over-tired you are more likely to get sick, eat poorly, and can be a bit grouchy to everyone around you.
The general recommendation is to get seven hours of sleep, but this might seem like a luxury when there’s lots to do….but that can wait. Try setting an alarm for when you need to go to sleep to ensure you get the seven hours you deserve. And if you go to sleep before then, those extra hours are an added bonus.
Christmas can be a great time to enjoy it with friends, colleagues and family, but it can also be an exhausting holiday if you don’t manage your time wisely.
According to author and chartered psychologist Dr Meg Arroll, “We all have an individual and unique social battery that is drained or restored by certain interactions and situations. The reasons why some people drain our batteries more than others is to do with a combination of factors, including your personality, the other person’s personality, your attachment style and how stressed you’re feeling.” Therefore if you feel like you are more of an introverted person, don’t feel pressured to attend every single social activity.
With so much going on, it’s easy to use our personal time for other commitments but it’s when we are busier, that we need ‘me time’ the most. Taking breaks during the day, keeping to your exercise routine and not overindulging during the holidays seem like small things, but they can go a long way to ensure that your body, mind and energy are regenerated from the holiday season and ready for the new year. Try recharging by reading a book for a few hours, watching your favourite movie or putting your feet up and having a little nap.
Nobody knows your body better than you. Make sure to listen to your body if it’s telling you to take a break, don’t ignore it and push through. Letting yourself get to the point of burnout won’t help anything or anyone around you, both at work and at home.
Opening up about how you’re feeling can be hard, especially when you feel like you're drowning. But if you have a loved one to talk to, that might help you feel more afloat. Discussing how you are feeling, 'invites people who care about you, to support you in the best way for you'. If that’s saying how overwhelmed you are or simply asking for some assistance, this might take a load off your shoulders so you’ll be able to have a clearer head.
Simple breathing exercises can make a huge difference when you’re feeling overwhelmed or your thoughts are racing, and they can easily be slotted into your day. Start every morning by taking slow deep breaths and focusing on the present and thinking about what you’re grateful for, this will help reduce your anxiety levels and allow you to think more clearly. If you want to go pro with your breathing checkout Wim Hoff’s breathing exercises
If you've got any more useful tips, let us know below.