The transition to daily life after the holidays, a stressful experience, a trip, or any significant break from your regular routine can be daunting and jarring.
While some trips leave me happy to come home and inspired to work towards my life goals, other trips or breaks leave me overwhelmed, and missing my family and friends.
If, like me, you experience this post-good time lull, there are several things you can do to help you regulate back into your daily life. Here are 4 ways to reground yourself after a significant routine break.
The most important thing to pay attention after returning from any sort of trip is SLEEP. Whether you changed time zones or not, travelling wears down even the most stable and strong bodies. Sleep is an often overlooked part of your health, but it's the fastest way to reset and recharge your brain.
Not only should you give yourself a few days to catch up on sleep, you should also regulate your sleep schedule. Spend the first 5-7 days after your trip going to bed and waking up at the same time every day. Try going to bed by 9:30 or 10pm and waking up at 6 or 7.
If you can go to bed and wake up around the same time every day, your body will be able to fall back into daily routines more quickly. Having a firmly established sleep routine will also help with jet lag and let you settle back into routine more quickly once you return home.
2. Watch What You Eat
The next best thing you can do for your body is watch what you eat. Especially after the holidays, it is important not to detox completely because your body is still craving warm, nourishing foods in the winter months.
Often on trips or stressful times, I find that I drink more and eat worse. Returning to daily life is a good opportunity to cut out alcohol, greasy foods and sweet foods. I try to take at least a week (if not two or three), to abstain from drinking alcohol and often coffee as well.
Load up on good veggies, nourishing grains, fruits, nuts, and healthy oils—food that will replenish the body. And as always, drinking a lot of water is the best thing you can do—not just post-trips but everyday!
3. Get Your Body Moving
Exercise is always my go-to after a trip. Long hours of sitting on planes or in cars always leave my achy body craving yoga and other physical activities. Take the time after your trip to take care of yourself by planning exercise time.
I personally like to do a little something every day, especially for the first week I am back. I practice yoga with my favorite teachers, go on a long hike, and go rock climbing. Anything to get me moving works, but sweating a little feels great and also helps flush the post-holiday toxins and get all the aches out of my body.
Make sure you don’t go 100% the first week or two; it’s best to give your body the chance to recover fully before starting to ask too much of it again.
4. Take Time to Just Chill
Finally, take time to chill. Read a book, sit by a fire, watch an entire season of The Walking Dead. Whatever your idea of chilling is, plan an afternoon to do it. Sleep is important but what you do in between bedtime is important too.
It's important to relax when your body is recovering from the stress of travel, but no matter who you are or what’s going on in your life, having some chill time is important! Chill time is self care, take it just as seriously as eating well and exercising. Taking time to relax without your phone, without email and maybe without people will help you recover so you can kick ass when you go out to do what you do!
While most of us think we need to jump right back into our lives at full force, you will find that if you ease back into daily routines and "normal" life, you will be more present, more energetic and more productive.
Even superheroes need breaks and self care. Take care of yourself, be willing to take a break and then watch as your life becomes more fruitful as a result.
Image credit: Paige Rene