30 Aug Labor Day Blues
Labor Day: A long weekend of barbeques, trips to the beach, retail sales and vacation. Also, the last weekend of summer and the last hoorah before school and fall schedules begin–YIKES! Labor Day tends to evoke two very different emotions in people–excitement over the former and dread over the latter. For many, summer consists of 2 months of relaxation, lighter workloads, no school and traveling. Transitioning from this lifestyle back to reality (5 day workweeks, school/homework, and a heavier workload) can send anyone into a frenzy!
Transitions, in general, are not easy. Many of my clients come in with one particular issue, but when we get down to it, much of what they are experiencing is caused by some type of transition or change in their life.
While adjusting to new situations can be easier for some than others, getting used to a different way of life can take time and patience. Whether you’re an adolescent or an adult, you are going to go through the summer transition phase (no one is immune).
Below are some tips on how to help you go from post Labor Day blues back to feeling like your old self and ready to take on the fall (Pumpkin Spice Latte not included).
- Routine: This will be your number one protective factor in helping to make this transition as seamless as possible. Make a routine and get into it now. Continuity and routine are essential for everyone, from infant to adult, to help us function more effectively. Picking a bedtime and a wakeup time is an easy way to start. While it might be difficult, stick to it!
- Eat dinner as a family: Summer is often a time when kids are away and parents might be traveling. Dinner can be a time to reconnect as a family. Make a calendar that notes what might be for dinner every night and pick a specific topic to discuss. Let everyone have a say in dinner ideas and topics–this will get the kids excited to eat as a family.
- Stay positive: While this may be easier said than done, trying to keep a positive outlook on things will impact everyone around you. Try to think of a few positive things in your life or things you are looking forward to in the upcoming months. Believe it or not, the power of positive thinking may just help turn that frown upside down.
- Watch what you say: Piggy backing off no. 3, watch what you say around the kids. Your kids are sponges and will pick up on every little thing you say (even things you don’t say). If you are moaning and groaning about going back to work, there is a very good chance they are going to do the same about school (regardless of how much they loved school in the past.) Remember, your kids emulate you. If you stay positive, you have a much greater chance that your kids will follow suit.
This is a life transition that happens every year without fail. Summer turns to fall–that’s just how it goes. While circumstances may be different every year, remind yourself that somehow you’ve done it for ‘x’ amount of years and you’ve persevered. You’ve done it once, you can do it again!
Authored by: Tracey Weiss, LCSW