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Our family loves the holidays! We eagerly await Christmas every year, counting down the days until this special celebration. Once the excitement settles down, we find ourselves experiencing the dreaded post-holiday blues.
It is easy to understand why we feel such a let down. Each year, it seems like stores put out their Christmas displays earlier and earlier. (Will there even be a Christmas In July anymore? The stores will have it all up already!)
Busy Boys Brigade tries as hard as we can to contain our Christmas excitement. We find it so difficult when we are out and about, staring in amazement at all the holiday splendor. It almost feels like Christmas when we actually start to decorate the day after Thanksgiving.
Once the first holiday decoration is unpacked, the Christmas frenzy is unleashed! Captain is just like his momma-Busy Boys Brigade version of Buddy the Elf. His enthusiasm stirs up his brothers and away we go!
We ride that crazy holiday roller coaster right up to the big day. Excitement builds. Activity increases. Christmas chatter exceeds most speed limits.
Christmas morning arrives and-BOOM!-welcome to cray-cray town! Our holiday morning starts off a slew of celebrations. Opening presents, Christmas Mass, dinner at my in-laws. Next day, my family comes into town-and the holiday fun continues!
When our last guest leaves a few days later, the boys and I are practically in a holiday coma. Too many sweets, treats, and late nights lead to cranky attitudes (for the boys too!).
This momma is going to be proactive this year and have a post-holiday blues battle plan! Will you join me in helping our families climb out of our post-holiday funks?
6 Ways Your Family Can Overcome Post-Holiday Blues
**Warning: Some of my training and experience as a mental health therapist is going to come out in this section!
This idea is nothing new but can have such a positive effect on your family. Sit down with your loved ones and talk about what is going on. Allow all thoughts and emotions-nothing is wrong. Help yourself and your family members recognize and accept their current perspective.
Once these thoughts and feelings are acknowledged, work with each other to form a plan of how to reframe-taking irrational or negative thoughts and transforming them into rational or positive thoughts. (My boys love when I use the word “transform”-Transformers are a big hit here!)
After all family members have had an opportunity to share and work on their thoughts and feelings, take time to pray as a family. Prayer is such a powerful way to unite your family under God’s love and support. Offer up your individual and family concerns. Silent or aloud, prayer can work wonders on your family’s post-holiday blues!
Get up and get moving! Physical activity can help you feel better mentally and physically. Your whole family can feel a boost in spirits when you exercise together.
If weather permits, head outside and find some fun winter activities to do as a family.
- Go for a winter walk or hike–Observe nature into its dormant state. Breathe in the refreshing cooler air and talk about upcoming family plans.
- Play regular games-with a winter twist! Basketball with mittens can be a challenge but super fun. Soccer in the snow is a blast! Tag, follow the leader-any game you play outside-can be modified for family fun in the winter.
- Got snow? Get playing! Build snow people. Have a snowball fight. Create snow forts. Make snow angels. We love to go sledding and use these snow accessories for extra fun.
Too cold or miserable outside? No worries! Get moving indoors with some fun exercise DVDs. Melanie, at Psycho With 6, shares A Winter Workout for Kids that looks great. Dust off exercise equipment and take turns working out-and cheering each other on! Play a game of Simon Says or Follow the Leader. Two of our family favorite games that get us up and moving include Twister and Charades.
4. Plan a Party!
Just because the holidays are over doesn’t mean the fun has to end! Plan a celebration with your family. Pick an upcoming special event or just a random idea (silly hair day?). Brainstorm about ways your family can prepare for fun in the near future.
Talk about snacks, games, and activities. Select a beloved or new movie and plan a family movie night. Schedule out family fun nights for the whole year! Give yourselves special times to look forward to-and you will soon find your post-holiday blues fading away.
5. Family Hobby
Does your family do any hobbies together? If so, talk about ways you can continue or add to the fun.
If you have yet to find a family hobby, consider each family member’s interests and research a hobby all could enjoy. Family hobbies don’t have to be elaborate or expensive. Simple crafts using recycled items can be loads of fun. Stamp collecting, sticker books, bird watching, or candle making can be enjoyable and educational.
Families often volunteer at church or local shelters prior to the holidays. Why not keep the spirit of giving after the holidays? Studies show that volunteer work can have multiple positive benefits for an individual. Find a local organization in need of volunteers that allows families to participate. Discover an online organization or two that reflects a special interest of your family and work on projects to raise money. My friend, Paula at All Things Mom, worked with her family to help their daughter raise money for a charity that meant so much to her.
I recommend doing an internet search using keywords that reflect your family’s beliefs and interests. There are many charities and non-profit organizations out there. (Please take time to thoroughly research these charities-unfortunately, some may not always use the money in the most appropriate ways.
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I pray that these 6 Ways Your Family Can Overcome Post-Holiday Blues blesses and helps your family. I would love to hear how your family beats the post-holiday blues! Leave a comment below and share your tips!