How to Get your Holiday Buzz Back
The reason summer holidays are so good for us is that while we’re away, we instinctively do things that boost our physical and emotional wellbeing. Things like eating well, getting enough rest, socialising, enjoying nature, taking time for ourselves and swimming, taking regular exercise or even trying out new or adventurous sports.
Most of us recognise how good these activities have made us feel and vow to turn some of them into regular habits. But as soon as we get back, life inevitably gets in the way. We stop nurturing ourselves and end up with the winter blues.
Fortunately, it doesn’t have to be that way. There are a number of things we can do to keep that holiday buzz going well into the winter months and beyond.
Read our top five tips to find out how…
1. Bring back healthy habits
One of the main reasons we look after ourselves better on holiday is that it’s easy to adopt healthy habits. The pool is on our doorstep so we end up going swimming every day. What’s interesting is that it’s not just the proximity of the pool that makes us do this, but repeating the same behaviour.
It’s actually easier to make yourself go swimming every day of the week, than it is to go at an unplanned time once a week. That’s because by doing the same thing every day, you start to make it a habit; something you automatically want to do, without having to really think about it.
So one of the best ways to stop your batteries running down again as soon as you get back from holiday is to identify something simple you can do to boost your wellbeing in a particular area and make doing this a habit.
For example, if you want to continue exercising every day back home, perhaps by going for a regular walk, pick a specific time and place and make walking part of your daily routine back home. Even if you decide to vary the route, try to set off on your walk at the same time each day, or make it part of your commute to or from work to make it a healthy habit you’ll automatically want to keep doing.
If you end up joining the gym, decide which classes or days you will attend and stick to it. By going at the same time every week, it will become a positive wellbeing habit. But if you put off deciding whether or not to go until the last minute, you’ll soon find an excuse not to go or get caught up with other things.
2. Anticipate hurdles
It takes 60 days to form a habit and turn a positive intention to look after yourself into a regular behaviour. So it’s important to anticipate things that might derail you in those first two months and think about how you’re going to overcome them.
Let’s say going on holiday made you realise how much you’ve neglected taking time for yourself and you loved sitting by the sea reading a chapter of your book first thing every morning. There’s no reason not to continue reading a chapter of a book before everyone else wakes up back home.
However, if you’re in the habit of using your phone to wake you up and it always sucks you into checking social media or replying to emails, think about how you can avoid switching on your phone until you’ve read your book (or buy an alarm clock).
Remember, it’s easier to have ‘me time’ every day by making it a habit than it is to do this at a random time once a week.
Similarly, if you enjoyed getting enough sleep for once and want to go to bed a bit earlier back home, think about what would stop you. What if it’s time for you to go to bed and you’re immersed in a Netflix drama? What can you do to prevent that from happening, such as not starting a programme that will finish too late? How can you balance the daily demands on your time that stopped you going to bed early before your holiday with your new desire to give yourself enough rest?
3. Set powerful goals
It’s much more challenging to look after your health at home than it is while you’re on holiday. So it’s important to think about your motivation for setting a wellbeing habit.
People who set nebulous goals for exercising, such as wanting to lose weight or improve their looks, are 32% less likely to sustain regular exercise than those who choose to exercise because they want the resulting endorphin hit.
As important as losing a few pounds might seem after all those holiday ice creams, it won’t get you out the door on a cold wet night after a tiring day. But knowing that you’re doing something that will give you a buzz afterwards might.
Similarly, trying to go to bed early because it’s good for you won’t be as empowering as identifying how feeling tired is affecting your work or personal relationships. If your goal is to have enough energy to get through your work faster so you can enjoy taking up a hobby or playing with your kids in the evening, you’re more likely to stick to that commitment.
4. Keep your resilience batteries in mind
In total, we have six ‘resilience batteries’ that we need to keep charged up to provide ourselves with the energy, motivation and drive needed to ‘thrive’ instead of just ‘survive’ each day.
If one of your batteries becomes flat, it will drain you of energy, make you feel tired and lethargic and make it more difficult for you to sustain your energy in other areas. So it’s important to focus on recharging the battery that’s running the lowest first and not try to change too many things at once.
The batteries are:
- Physical: Are you sleeping well, eating well and exercising regularly?
- Social: Do you enjoy quality social interaction with others?
- Emotional: Do you get to do activities that bring you joy?
- Mental: Can you handle pressure and learn from your mistakes?
- Mindful: Are you able to live in the moment and switch off?
- Meaning: Do you live your life according to your values and purpose?
5. Get a wellbeing coach
Making positive changes to your life by yourself can be challenging. We all know the theory and what we should be doing to boost our wellbeing. It’s putting into action that’s difficult.
Most people really want to feel energised and happy. But they struggle to do things as simple as going to bed on time, even though they know this will make a massive difference to their wellbeing the next day. Forming positive wellbeing habits is as much about breaking bad habits and overcoming obstacles as anything else. That’s why we’re now offering wellbeing coaching as an optional additional service.
This involves helping you, or a member of your team, to understand the importance of those six resilience batteries, assess which areas of your life need more attention and create very specific goals (based on the GROW model of coaching). You’ll then be supported to achieve these goals, with three 45-minute one-to-one coaching sessions.
For example, if moving to a new area or additional demands on your time caused you to let close friendships slip by, making you feel isolated, your coach would help you to establish which friendship goals would be most suitable for you. These could be making two new local friends while resurrecting an old friendship, and assessing what was helping and hindering you from achieving this.
If the obstacle was psychological, such as a fear of reaching out to new people in case you’re rejected, or a touch of imposter syndrome making you not want to ‘gatecrash’ existing groups in your new area, you would be coached to understand the psychological drivers hindering your progress at making new friends and helped to overcome them.
If the obstacle was practical, such as leaving work too late to socialise or not having any childcare arrangements in place, you would be helped to identify ways to address this.
Once you have been helped to get back into a healthy habit in this area, such as meeting up with a good friend once a month or calling an old friend for a chinwag once a week, you would then be helped to apply the process to another area of your life to create another positive wellbeing habit.
We hope you found these tips helpful. Do leave a comment below to let us know what you think and which holiday habits you’d like to bring home!
Also, if you would like to find out more about how you, or your organisation, could benefit from wellbeing coaching and for pricing, please email us at [email protected]