10 Ways to Beat the Post-Holiday Blues

When that last drop of New Year’s Eve champagne is gone and the Christmas ornaments are packed away, many people enter a state of post-holiday blues. The anticipation and planning that begins with Halloween ends when you open your eyes on the second day of January. It’s winter; the parties are over and it’s back to the daily grind. But you can beat the post-holiday blues.

10 Ways to Beat the Post-Holiday Blues


1. Rescue an Animal

Visit your local animal shelter. Give some time and attention to an animal without a home. If you are able, adopt a pet and add some new life to your home. If you can’t adopt one, ask if you can donate your time to the shelter. You’ll be helping animals, but they’ll enrich your life as well.

How Pets Raise Spirits and Improve Health

2. Declutter

Look around your home — I mean really look around. Are the walls closing in on you? Could you use some breathing room? A cluttered home can make you feel overwhelmed and unable to move forward in your thinking and your activities. It’s harder to clean, too, adding to the chores you have to do, or the chores that never get done. It’s a vicious cycle that can be broken. Pick out a few items each day and ask yourself — do I need this…does it serve a purpose…would I really miss it if it were gone…can it be useful to someone else? Most people feel better and perform better in an uncluttered environment.

Simple Ways to Declutter Your Life

3. Volunteer

There’s a lot of hype about volunteering during the holidays, but those needs don’t go away in January. People are still hungry, ill, homeless, and in need of assistance. If you’ve got time on your hands, and it’s making you blue, helping someone else can lift you out of the doldrums.

4. Give

If you’re busy with earning a living and caring for family, volunteering time isn’t always practical. Perhaps you can afford a monetary gift to your favorite worthy charity. Choosing a local charity makes it more personal. If you can’t afford to give money, how about donating items from your home that you no longer use or want? You get decluttered and someone else gets something they need. That’s a win/win.

5. Perform an Act of Kindness

Smile at a stranger. Open a door for someone else. Thank someone for the work they do. Let another driver into the line of traffic. Give someone a ride. Run an errand for someone who is sick. Small kindnesses take little time or effort but can make a big difference in someone else’s day. Perhaps you’ll even inspire others to pay it forward.

How Small Acts of Kindness Can Heal and Inspire

Next: 5 More Fun Tips!

6. Green Your Home with Plants

Living things can perk up your home, your office, and your frame of mind. Green plants not only look beautiful, but houseplants can even improve air quality.

Top 10 Houseplants for Cleaner Air

7. Play

Chances are that someone in your family received some games for Christmas, and maybe you played a few. Playing doesn’t have to end because Christmas is over. Gather the family for game night. Join the kids and make a jigsaw puzzle. Try your hand at a video game. You’re never too old to play, so get in there and have a good time!

8. Take Up a New Hobby

So you’ve always wanted to take up whittling…or building birdhouses…or painting…or crafting. Whatever it is you’ve always wanted to do, how about just taking the plunge and getting started. You may be more talented than you realized, or you may find out you don’t enjoy it after all. But you’ll never know until you try and if it’s not for you, there’s no obligation to continue. The fun is in trying.

9. Learn

What piques your interest? What do you long to learn? Enrolling in a class or workshop on your favorite topic can help beat the blues and add some excitement to your life. Knowledge is invigorating!

10. Make Healthy Lifestyle Changes

It’s hard to feel good on a bad diet. The choices you make for your body have a direct impact on how you feel physically and emotionally. If you’re feeling blue, perhaps you can turn things around by dumping those bad holiday eating habits and turning toward fruits and veggies and other healthy foods. A brisk walk, especially in a green environment, can work wonders for body and soul.

Walking Your Way to a Healthier Mind, Body & Soul

Improve Mood & Self Esteem with Green Exercise

Image: Jupiterimages/Getty Images/Thinkstock

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Diana Akers
Diana Akers1 years ago

I really liked the tip on decluttering! I find it overwhelming seeing all the post holiday STUFF everywhere. It also helps you purge, donate, and destress. As for the holiday blues, I think of it as a holiday hangover! For parents in particular, here are a few thoughts (and a specific tip) for how to survive the coming days: http://bookboard.com/blog/2013/12/nursing-the-holiday-hangover/

Carol Sinclair
Carol S.1 years ago

A couple new ones to try if needed this season. Winter can cause a depressed mood for me sometimes, never mind end of holiday season.

Paulo Hernandes
Paulo Hernandes1 years ago

I've found a great way to beat them holiday blues is to not go on holiday in the first place!! Honestly I'm 43 and I've never left my mums backyard she's really and cooks a mean apple crumble

Hazel Veal
Hazel Veal2 years ago

This year has been very hard. I have my 9 year old son Ethann My 7 year old daughter Jazmine My 7 year old granddaughter Tifany and my granddaughter Nataly who is 2. I was hoping there was someone out there who could offer a few gifts this year for their Christmas. Any thing would be gratefully appreciated and cherished. I am 44 on disability and times just has gotten a lot harder than I could ever imagine.
Thanks so much just for reading this. I know there are so many families out here this year that are struggling to make ends meet. It is heartbreaking when you have to choose between electricity and toys for the kids. Not even going to try and think of what our Christmas meal will consist of.
May God continue to shine His light on each and every one of us!!
my email is

Connie O.
Connie O.2 years ago

I enjoy volunteering and giving year round...but especially in January when things start to slow down. I also try to do something different, whether take up a new hobby or visit a local place I have not been to.

Paul Girardin
Paul Girardin2 years ago

Nice article!

Thanks for sharing!

I am already doing a couple of these and I will certainly do more in the future!

Fiona T.
Fi T.2 years ago

Let's get help by giving

Veronique L.
veronique L.2 years ago

Going to work every day is enough!

Jane R.
Jane R.2 years ago

I'm too busy feeling down to try any of these tips. It's been grey rainy days lately and too cold. I need to see and feel the sun to get better.

Maureen D.
Bill Donaldson2 years ago

Great Tips!