You’ve only just come home from your holiday and deposited your bags in the hallway. But you already feel like you need another holiday, stat.
Hardly has the euphoric high and feeling of restfulness worn off when a sense of ennui hits you like a ton of bricks.
We’ve all suffered from post-holiday blues. But are there ways to ease the long, dark journey back into the daily grind? Here are some tips and tricks that may be worth a shot. At least until your next vacation.
1. UNPACK IMMEDIATELY
Don’t leave your suitcase lying open in a sad corner of misery; dirty clothes still wallowing in a puddle of existential self-loathing. It’ll only remind you of what was and what could be.
Run a load of laundry, put your stuff away and hold a small but formal send-off ceremony for your suitcase as you put it back into storage. Out of sight, out of mind. It hurts, we know, but you need some time apart so that you can find yourself again.
2. PLAN YOUR NEXT HOLIDAY
To distract yourself from the reality of having to go back to your dull, quotidian life, start planning your next trip as soon as possible.
In fact, don’t even give the post-holiday blues the chance to hit you after you’re back from vacation. Start planning before you’re even halfway through your holiday. In fact, plan a few holidays in advance. Whatever gives you a sense of purpose. The early bird catches the flight, right?
3. GO OUTSIDE
Chances are, your jet lag is contributing to your feeling blue. Tempting as it is, don’t hole up in your bedroom in a fetal position with the blackout curtains drawn. Instead, force yourself to go outdoors, take a walk, and maybe even get some exercise. The vitamin D from the sunshine will make you feel better.
Until you remember that you’re dodging dodgy electric scooters at a swelteringly humid void deck and no longer sipping Rioja on a sun-drenched patio in Seville, that is.
4. DON'T GO BACK TO WORK RIGHT AWAY
Don’t plan your vacation such that you land back home on a Sunday night and have to go straight back to work the next morning. Give yourself a buffer period of a day or two. This will lessen the feeling of doom and dread, and allow you to catch up on sleep so you’re better rested.
Of course, once Monday rolls around – and roll around it eventually will, make no mistake about that – you’ll be right back at square one. Erm... Back to Point 2: Why haven't you planned that next vacation?
5. RETURN TO A ROUTINE
No sleeping in and procrastinating. Get back into your daily routine. When you have a schedule of tasks to keep you occupied, your mind won’t have a chance to linger on the bitter breakup that has taken place between you and your vacation.
Discipline is the key to lasting happiness. Not endless strawberry daiquiris on the beach. Not lying in a hammock under a palm tree. Not automated out-of-office email replies. No, we’re not crying. It’s just allergies, okay?
Before you even get back from vacation, make plans to hang out with your friends and family. This will give you social occasions to look forward to. And the people you meet will invariably ask about your trip, so you can relive it by going over every single detail with them and making them look at all your selfies.
Oh, who are we kidding? This is only going to sharpen the pain. Pass the Ben & Jerry’s and return to Point 2. Where to next?