Beating the post-Christmas blues – how to get back into your regular routine

Have you got the post-Christmas blues? You're not alone if you do. Many people feel a bit flat after Christmas, especially families. Here's why your children may be out of sorts, and what to do about it.

Post-Christmas blues are the worst. The festivities are over and all you’re left with is the credit card bill and some stale mince pies. So how do we deal with this and find the fun again?

Many children do not cope well when their regular routine is disrupted. This is the down side to the holidays. Whilst it's great to spend extra time together as a family, a lack of structure can make some children feel unsettled. And inevitably, this may show itself in their behaviour.

Little children show their feelings through their actions rather than words. The younger they are the more this is true, because they simply don’t have the language skills yet to express how they feel. So if your child is acting up it's not because you've done anything wrong - it could simply be a normal reaction to a change in routine.

And if your child’s behaviour has gone off the rails in the holidays, you might find that the renewed structure of the New Year could be all it takes to get them back on track.

Many children thrive on routine, so even if you’re not going out to school or nursery every day, keep to your usual meal, nap and bed times as much as possible.

Aim for your child's regular bedtime a few days before you’re due back at school or nursery. If naps have gone out the window or bedtime has become later, start to pull it back. It might take your child a few days to re-adjust, so don’t leave this until the day before

Get outside every day in the holidays, even if it’s only for a few minutes. A little exercise will life everyone’s mood and help your children sleep better. Enjoy relaxing and spending time as a family while you can. Think about how Christmas worked and what you might change for next year. Aim for feeling good that it happened rather than sad that it's over. And it's only another 12 months until it rolls around again!

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