There are some people with ADHD who don’t like the holidays and can’t wait to get back to normal. There are other ADHDers who find the holidays exciting and enjoy every moment; but then, when they are over, they experience a big emotional low.
The build up to the holidays seems to start right after Halloween. So that means 2 full months of parties, shopping trips for presents and outfits, decorations to put up, elaborate cooking and family traditions.
Once midnight has chimed on New Year’s Eve, and the popping of corks comes to an end, it is back to normal. Life can feel flat and ordinary.
Many people with ADHD feel depressed after big events or after achieving a goal. The holidays and New Year’s celebrations are no exception. It doesn’t help that January is a cold dark month and you might have S.A.D.
If you experience an emotional low or depression after the holidays, here are 7 suggestions to stop that from happening… or minimize it.
1. Have Something to Look Forward to
Start planning some events to look forward to in January, February and March.
Plan one thing for each month that will take your focus off the ending of the holidays and on the new thing.
2. Set Goals
Rather than setting New Year’s Resolutions, set goals instead. Having a goal to channel your energy and focus really helps override low moods. It doesn’t matter what the goal is: de–clutter your home, train for a race, or something completely different!
3. Tidy Up
Pack all your holiday decorations away. Many people with ADHD delay packing their holiday decorations away and leave them up till spring. Rather than prolonging the holiday mood, it can add to your sadness. Set your timer for 15 minutes and start putting things away.
4. Put Your New Belongings Away
If you have presents or new items from the sales, put them away too. Having clutter lying around increases the risk of depression. You could also donate belongings you don’t use; because it creates space and shifts your energy.
5. Assess Your Life
Often, the people who experience the post holiday slump the most, are the ones who don’t enjoy their daily lives.
If this is you, what is it about your life you don’t enjoy? Your job? Being single? Your commute? Your unmanaged ADHD? Whatever it is, there are ways to improve the situation. Make a commitment to yourself that you will make changes to your life this year.
6. What Is It About The Holidays You Enjoy?
Another good thing to assess is what is it about the holiday you enjoy? Is it that you get to go out more than usual? Spend more time with your family? Or something else? Next, work out how you can include more of those things in your day to day life.
7. Review Your Year
Think back over the last 12 months and write down 10 of your accomplishments. Write down 10 things, but once you get started, you’ll find it easy to keep going 🙂
This is something participants of the annual Untapped Brilliance Planning Challenge do. It’s a great exercise to start the New Year because celebrating your big or small accomplishments makes you feel good about yourself and ready to accomplish new things, in the New Year!