Corporate wellness insights

Bouncing Back from the Holiday Haze

Posted by Colleen Sideck, MPH, RDN on 01.02.2019

The holiday season is one of fullness. We typically go through the holidays with full hearts, full homes, and full bellies. While those experiences can bring positivity and happiness to our lives, they can overload us after a while, triggering negative emotions and stress instead. Now that we’ve gotten through another holiday season, we may be itching to get back to status quo in terms of our usual habits and feelings. After time off from our routine, it can seem intimidating to jump back into our healthy habits all at once, but remembering why they make us feel and think better can serve as motivation and help to make the readjustment easier.

Here are four of our top tips for bouncing back after the holiday haze.

1. Prioritize shut eye.

Between traveling, staying up late and eating more than usual, the holidays often disrupt your normal sleep habits and make your shut eye less restful. Get back to your usual sleep habits as soon as possible when the festivities die down. You can re-sync your internal clock by consistently going to bed and getting up at the same time each day.

2. Give yourself space.

It’s great seeing family and loved ones, but spending more time with them than usual can leave you feeling emotionally exhausted, even if the conversation is friendly. We might not have as much time to recharge between events as we need, which leaves us running on empty by the time we reach the new year. Give yourself the alone time you need. Focus on self-care and relaxation so you can feel like yourself again sooner.

3. Make water your beverage of choice.

Holiday gatherings can be heavy on alcohol and high-salt foods. Drinking too many alcoholic beverages can dehydrate us, and high-salt foods can leave us feeling bloated. If you choose to enjoy these items over the holidays, aim to cut back on alcohol and salt once celebrations are over. Drink enough water to rehydrate your body and help it get rid of the extra salt.

4. Take a break from leftovers.

Don’t feel obligated to eat up your leftovers right away if you’re getting tired of the heavy holiday fare. To feel satisfied after eating, you want to be feeding your body foods that you’ll enjoy! Consider freezing leftover casseroles, cranberry sauce, mashed potatoes, bread, gravy, turkey, ham, or cookies in airtight containers. If frozen soon after cooking, leftovers can safely stay frozen for up to 3 to 4 months. When you’re missing these special foods later in the winter, you’ll be able to thaw them and relive the tastes of the holidays.

Colleen is a member of the WCS Health Coaching team. As a Registered Dietitian, she is passionate about our team's ability to guide employees towards sustainable, healthy habits that help them lead their fullest life—inside and outside the workplace.