Getting Back into a Rhythm after the Holidays
By: Esther Pransky, Lubicom Staff
Your Roadmap for the Transition to Real Life
Mt. Everest’s white-capped peaks have nothing on Mt. Laundry that sits in your basement.
Yes, the holidays ended yesterday. And no matter if you’re feeling sad, nostalgic, or relieved, one thing’s for sure:
You’re not done yet.
Whether it’s the laundry, the linens, the unpacking or simply the general MESS, it takes some time to undo the (we hope) wonderful chaos of the past few weeks.
So if you’re trying to jump right back into a full non-holiday schedule, you’re probably already feeling stressed and behind.
Stop, take a deep breath, and give yourself permission to transition to regular life. To ease back into a full schedule. To tie up loose ends so you can enter normal mode without feeling like you’re still on a hamster wheel.
Give yourself the gift of a week to fully transition back to real life.
For the next week, here’s a roadmap to smooth the transition back to everyday existence.
Day 1: Refresh Your Batteries
Your co-workers think you were on an extended vacation. You feel like you just ran a marathon.
So take a day to catch your breath.
- Once you’ve done the emergency loads, let the laundry sit another day. It’s not going anywhere.
- Take a nap or at least go to sleep on time.
- Read a book.
- Go on a date with your spouse or a friend.
You know what you need to refill your tank.
Even if, like most of us, you’re back at work, you can try to keep your schedule as light as possible to give yourself some downtime today.
Days 2–3: Clean up!
Yes, this one is so big it might need two days.
It’s clean-up time!
If you were home for the holidays:
Wash the laundry. . . Change the linens. . . Clean the playroom. . . Pack up the holiday supplies.
Bonus: You’ll discover all the items your guests left behind.
If you were away for the holidays:
Empty the suitcases. . . Wash the laundry. . . Pack up the holiday supplies.
Bonus: You’ll discover all the items you left behind.
It’s hard work, but you’ll feel GREAT when you can look into your bedrooms again without feeling faint.
Day 4: Restock
Whether you were home or away, your fridge, pantry, and freezer are probably empty by now. Your leftovers are eaten, and the family is just starting to get hungry again, so today’s the perfect time to restock.
If you still have time after you unpack all your groceries, go for the gold and make a big batch of challah, brownies, or soup to get you started for the winter.
Day 5: Organize
Your house is clean. There’s fresh food to eat.
Now you have the mental space for some higher-level organizing:
- Update your menus and recipes for next year. Add important notes like “Double the veggie quinoa ONLY if Aunt Sarah comes again” or “Label ‘DecadentFudge Brownies’ as ‘Turnip Patties’ to deter freezer theft.”
- Organize your pictures. If you don’t do it now, will you ever do it? After deleting the 37 selfies of your daughter’s nose, you can upload the keepers. Share the files and smiles with your family.
- Take stock of your supplies. Do you need more guest linens? More towels? Another peeler? You’ll thank yourself come Passover time if you take care of it now.
Day 6: Wrap Up
Even the best holidays have some bumps in the road. Some mishaps are unavoidable, but you aren’t predestined to repeat history, either.
Plan a recon session with your spouse to go over what worked and what didn’t. I like to ask my kids what their favorite and worst parts were. The answers are always enlightening, often laugh-out-loud funny, and sometimes food for thought.
If you were hosted, consider sending gifts or at least thank you cards. Imagine how excited your mom and dad will be if you surprise them with a handwritten poem. (It may even help them get over the plumbing bill that little David inspired. . .)
Wrapping up the holidays with thank you notes or gifts will leave everyone smiling.
Day 7: Plan
Now you can finally get to THE LIST – the one of all the projects you pushed off until after the holiday.
It might seem a little scary, but since your holidays are neatly wrapped up, you can focus on the future.
But wait! Before you jump in, map out your priorities, goals, and how and when you’ll reach them. A little bit of planning will set you up for success for the months ahead.
There you have it. You’re organized, settled, and rested.
Get out there and conquer the world.
(At least until the next holiday.)