Post-event blues happen to everyone. We’ve all spent a considerable amount of precious time and effort preparing for a goal or major event at some point in our lives. Perhaps putting aside any spare money you have to pay for a well needed family holiday, putting hours and hours into preparing for a physically demanding sporting event, hitting send on a huge piece of work you’ve been focussed on, or even planning that once in a lifetime wedding. It’s getting nearer and nearer. You’ve put everything into getting ready for it. You keep telling yourself “just a couple more days”. Then suddenly it’s over. The sudden withdrawal of the excitement and stress can lead to an emotional crash. Instead of feeling relief or elation you feel a little low, perhaps empty and thinking “now what”? Sound familiar?
You’re not alone. There’s no way to prevent feeling low after an event, but you can prepare yourself with how to react to the feelings you may have. I’ve just had a fantastic week away spending quality time with my family. Something we just don’t get to do that often. The week simply flew by and it was suddenly time to come home. This got me thinking about post-event blues and how I keep myself upbeat following a significant event in my life.
Here are my 7 tips to battle post-event blues:
1. Understand that you’re working hard towards an end goal and it will either have a final result or it will be a stepping stone to bigger and better things. For example if you’re training for a half marathon it may be just the first step towards committing to a full marathon. Once you have completed the half, accept this is the first level of your goal, reset and continue.
2. Try to avoid tunnel vision. By this I mean keep up any other hobbies and interests, even as you focus on whatever event it is. It’s always good to have more than one thing on the go and the focus will help to keep the post-event blues under control.
3. Take time out to reflect on what you’ve just completed, endured or done. This can be on your own or with those who shared the experience with you. If you’ve just completed a physical challenge, connect with your training partner or others who took part. We set up a family group message to share the photos we took which has allowed us to continue the holiday banter!
4. Give yourself praise. Recognise that the hard work and effort you put into the event has been worth it. If you’ve achieved something, then reward yourself. This also helps to motivate you to move on to other goals.
5. Set a new goal. Tick this one off your bucket list and decide “what next”? Choose your next travel destination, focus on your next race or a promotion at work. Try not to make any life changing decisions until those post-event blues have passed. Life is about experiences and achievements, so embrace your next challenge and go for it. (SMART Goals and how to set them)
6. Look for the positive. A planned event such as a holiday, race or a wedding will have an end date so you can predict the post-event blues and take action to prevent them. Use the time following an event to recover, relax and recharge yourself. See this as a positive thing. This will allow you to reboot yourself before your next challenge.
7. Ask for help. Post-event blues tend to be temporary. However, if you find that they are lasting more than a couple of weeks or that you are losing interest in regular activities, think about seeking help. Depression is common after a big event in life and support can really make a big difference.
Having the right mindset can lessen the post-event blues and help you focus on celebrating what you have achieved. Always think positively before, during and after an event.
You only have one life, so make sure you live it by being the best version of you!
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