How to De-stress After the Holidays

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As the whirlwind of holidays is winding down, you may be feeling like you’ve been in survival mode just trying to check things off the list. Now that most of the chaos is over, here are 5 ways of how to de-stress after the Holidays.

text " how to de-stress after the holidays " and photo of 5 planners

I received these products for free from Erin Condren. I choose to use and promote EC products because I love them and have found them to be helpful in organizing my life.

If you’d like to see more about the Guided Journals and Planners that I mention in this post, check out this video on YouTube where I flip through each of them.

“When it Calms Down…”

It’s no secret that the Holidays can be a busy and stressful time of year. It’s a flurry of activities and to do lists, with little time to rest in between. On more than one occasion I’ve told myself that “I’ll do ___ when it calms down after Christmas.”

Hobbies and activities that refresh and rejuvenate us are often pushed until later, when all the more time sensitive tasks are complete. And during November & December, that list is always growing and seems never ending.

The new year is right around the corner, and with it usually comes a series of hopes and goals for the next twelve months.

I like to call the week between Christmas and New Years “Planner Week.” It’s the time when I set up all my new planners and really finalize what goals I want to accomplish in the next year. But it’s also the time that I set aside to reset and detox from the past few months. Ya know, before things go back to normal in January.

How to De-Stress After the Holidays

I’ve got 5 ways how to de-stress after the holidays. But the real secret to these is that it’s not just about what you do in the week before January. And seriously, these changes can be made any time of year when you start to feel like you need a refresh.

The key to making a real difference in your life is taking small steps each day. Little changes done consistently will make a bigger difference over time than large actions done at random intervals. But I’ll talk more about that as we go through some ideas of how to de-stress after the holidays.

1. Set goals for 2023

The first step is to set goals for 2023. Actually take some time and decide what you want to accomplish in the coming year. How do you want to feel? What do you want to start doing? What do you want to stop doing?

While your yearly or overall goal may be large or seem like a stretch that you can accomplish it, remember that it is in the small, daily steps that bigger changes happen.

The new Erin Condren Goal Setting Planner can help you break down those goals into actionable steps, as well as getting clear on the WHY of what you want to do in the new year.

Getting your goals written down (instead of just floating around in your head) can help you de-stress after the holidays because it will give you direction and purpose for the coming year. It will help you identify a focus based on what is most important to you.

The Goal Setting Planner is divided into sections for 6 different goals. Each section has an overview where you can describe your goal and make a plan for achieving it.

There are two pages where you can break down the goal into smaller action steps that help you work towards the final result.

And next are 18 weekly check-in pages to plan and track the steps that you will take that week, and celebrate any progress that you make.

Finally, each goal’s section has two additional pages for celebrating and reflecting on your goal. Looking at things that worked, didn’t work, and what you’ve learned along the way will be so helpful as you continue to set new goals in the future.

Sometimes goals can seem overwhelming, but by writing them down (like in the Goal Setting Planner) and breaking them into smaller action items, even your biggest dreams can be accomplished.

Color coding your goals

I love to color code my goals. It helps me to be able to schedule it into my regular plans and see which goal I’m working on quickly. Erin Condren has recently come out with these packs of color coordinating pens. Each set has 6 different colors, and includes a fine tip, medium tip, and chisel tip.

I like to use the fine tip for writing my goals in my regular plans. The medium tip works well for brainstorming and planning my goals. And the chisel tip makes a great highlighter for marking my goals in my planner or creating a checkbox before an action step.

2. Add in some movement

The Holidays are extra busy and often times things like exercise can get pushed to the side. A great way to de-stress after the holidays and feel better, both physically and mentally, is to add some movement into your day.

I’m definitely not going to recommend that you start a intensive exercise routine. But I do think most people can benefit from adding in some exercise to their day (consult with your doctor on this).

But if you try to add in a complicated routine, you’re bound to get overwhelmed and it won’t go very far. But adding in small changed or basic movement that’s almost natural in your day is a great way to feel better and get stronger without losing your momentum on day 3 (I’m usually lucky if I make it to day 3).

The Erin Condren Fitness Planner is a 4 month daily planner and tracker that gives you space to record your exercise and movement. But what I love about this planner is that it starts off with taking inventory of how you feel about your health.

photo of open fitness planner and two markers

If you really want to know how to de-stress after the holidays, exercise is a really good way to boost all those feel-good hormones and can help you get rid of built up tension and anxiety.

Each monthly section starts with an undated calendar, with space for goals and rewards on the sidebar.

There are 32 daily pages (just to make sure there is enough room for those months with 31 days). There is plenty of room to track all your fitness and movement for the day. Each day also includes room for things like self care, daily wins, water intake, and sleep.

Each month ends with a with a check-in and reflection page. And at the end of the Fitness Planner there are a few note pages for additional information you want to keep in your fitness planner.

Movement can be a great way to de-stress after the holidays. But remember to start small and find things that you enjoy doing. It will make all the difference.

You may also like: Creating a Self Care Toolkit & Journaling for Mental Health

3. Read (or listen to) a book

I love reading! Reading can be entertainment or learning. Or both.

Reading is one of my favorite ways to de-stress after the holidays. We’ve spent so much time running around and being busy that it’s so nice to have a chance to just sit and read.

I’m always finding more books that I want to read, and its so hard to remember which ones I’ve had recommended to me.

And I feel like many of us have been waiting for the Erin Condren Reading Journal. It’s finally here and it’s just what I’d hoped it would be and more.

photo of open reading journal and two markers

Most of the Reading Journal is pages devoted to recording the books you’ve read and your thoughts about it. I love the space for recording thoughts and quotes, because I love reading books that I learn from and I can barely remember what I’ve read after I’ve finished the book if I don’t write it down while I’m reading (I also like to write in my books and highlight like crazy).

There’s also a section for book club notes, which is such a good idea to include!

And finally, the end of the Erin Condren Reading Journal has lists for your favorite books and books that you want to read.

I hope that you can have some extra time now to just rest and find something to read that you love.

4. Make time to take care of yourself

If you are feeling especially drained and out of energy and motivation, I would bet that not taking care of yourself is the culprit.

I was noticing the other day how most of the things that I seem to be doing are for other people. And while that isn’t necessarily a bad thing, we do need to take time to do things for ourselves as well. The holiday season always seems to make this harder to do.

So now is the time to find ways to practice a little self care and fill your own bucket. Choosing things that you love and help you get a fresh start (I always like to make sure all my laundry is done so all my clothes are clean) will be so helpful to de-stress after the holidays. Anything that you can do to reduce stress later will give you more peace of mind now too, as well as help your future self.

We may love to turn self care into larger events or activities like a vacation or spa day. But the best self care are those things that we do consistently. Some may be monthly or weekly, but it’s also important to find things that we can do each day to always feel refreshed.

The new Erin Condren Self Care Notebook can help you check in with yourself daily and make sure that you are doing those things that keep you functioning to your highest capacity.

Along with monthly and weekly self care planning pages and reflection, there are daily pages that give you space to be intentional about the way you care for yourself.

photo of open self care planner and two markers

This isn’t a planner that will tell you what to do, but instead will give you the space to make a plan for what you individually need. Your actions will vary from others. With time and practice, you will learn what works for you and what doesn’t.

I also love the monthly self care tracking page to record those things that you want to make into habits that you do daily.

This is a 3 month daily planner/journal, with lots of space for creating self care based goals.

It’s easier to feel stress and overwhelmed when you aren’t doing the things that your body and soul need to feel fulfilled. And the Self Care Notebook can help you focus on those things you need that will keep you feeling strong.

5. Think about your overall wellness

We’ve talked about many aspects of wellness. Setting goals, exercising, taking care of yourself, and taking time to rest and read are all things that can overlap with each other and with your wellness as a whole.

If you feel a pull towards taking steps to improve in all of these areas, the Wellness Log from Erin Condren may be helpful. It’s a 3 month daily planner that touches on many of the areas that we’ve already talked about. Doing a little in each category can also help you de-stress after the holidays.

Each daily page has space for your focus, tracking your food, movement/exercise, self care, and tracking other activities such as sleep and water.

photo of open well ness planner, wellness notepad, and two markers

Along with the daily pages, there are pages for monthly goal setting and reflections. Plus there are goal setting pages at the beginning of the planner. The Wellness Log is a great tool for keeping an overall view of your wellbeing.

Another option for making your wellness a focus is with the Erin Condren Weekly Wellness Notepad. This notepad has space for your wellness goals, action steps, and healthy habit tracking. There’s also a blank section on the side for any other notes you want to write down.

If you want to work on your overall wellness, but need something that you can add into your regular planner, the Weekly Wellness Notepad makes it easy to see your wellness goals and tracking on one page.

Your wellness is an overall picture, and when something is off it can affect other areas too. If you aren’t sure where to start, making small changes in each area can help get you on the right track and even help you to know what areas may need more of your attention and focus.

When you start to make changes in one area, it tends to have a positive effect on the other areas too.

Don’t make it complicated

Each of these new guided journals from Erin Condren can help you strengthen your actions in a given area of life. Start small and pick one or two that resonate with you most and use them in creating a positive change for next year.

Adding these things into your life doesn’t have to be hard or complicated. In fact, it shouldn’t just turn into another to do list. It’s about filling your own bucket so you can better help your people.

And while the week between Christmas and New Years is a great time to get started on these things, its not the only time they should be done. If you really want to know how to de-stress after the holidays, the best thing you can do is set yourself up to reduce stress all year long.

My Something Beautiful Life

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