Denise Jelinek shares simple things you can do today to prevent an energy crash after you've cooked and served the Thanksgiving meal.
It’s a phenomenon you may know all too well.
You’ve planned a big party, holiday, or project at work. It goes off without a hitch, but then you wake up the next day feeling blue with low energy.
You wonder, “What’s wrong with me?”
There is nothing wrong with you. What you are experiencing is common; it’s called post-event exhaustion.
It has nothing to do with your enjoyment or the success of the event. The exhaustion is a natural consequence of planning and hosting, but you can learn how to support yourself through it and even diminish its effect on you.
I believe that second to loving our Lord, our number one job as his daughters is to take care of ourselves. Consider this: who has the Lord entrusted with the care of you? You!
I pray that these tips help you, the Lord’s precious daughter, to have a very blessed Thanksgiving this year.
Prevent the crash
Since you will expend extra energy in the days leading up to and during the extended Thanksgiving weekend, it’s paramount to intentionally preserve your energy where you can. Here are some ideas:
- Continually ask yourself, “How can I make this task easier?”
- Use disposable pans or buy pre-made food.
- Ask for help and accept help when it’s offered.
- Schedule mini-restorative breaks (for example, schedule a walk or coffee with a friend on Friday morning).
- Ask, “Is this necessary?” and only do extras that bring you joy, instead of ones you think you “should” do.
Plan the 48 hours after the weekend
After a long holiday weekend, the familiar routines of normal life can be a welcome relief, but, often, that "exhale" is quickly replaced by the stress of household chores or work tasks that have piled up: laundry, emails, or other deadlines.
Being in a depleted state and then having superhuman expectations of yourself will only increase the exhaustion. Instead, make a 48-hour re-entry plan.
- Prioritize tasks: what REALLY needs to be done?
- Keep an unhurried pace.
- Allow plenty of time for rest. What’s an amount that sounds restorative for you?
- Delay what you can (remember, this is to preserve and care for you).
- Give others a realistic deadline for projects and tasks they’re expecting you to do. A stressed brain is very inefficient. If you give yourself 48 hours to recoup, each task will take a fraction of the time later in the week.
- Simplify life as much as possible.
- Ask for and accept help.
- Order pre-made meals.
Remember: This is normal. There is nothing wrong with you.
Often, when our energy is low or we feel blue, we think something is wrong or we have to figure out what happened (which only depletes our energy further). Instead of playing detective, support yourself during the 48 hours by:
- Remembering this is normal and there is nothing wrong with you
- Speaking kindly to and being gentle with yourself
- Knowing that time spent restoring your energy will increase your productivity at the end of the week
We can all have peace during the holidays by intentionally restoring our energy reserves and being realistic, kind, and gentle with ourselves. The key is to plan how you’ll support yourself in advance, which will minimize the natural phenomenon of post-event exhaustion.
Copyright 2023 Denise Jelinek
About the Author
As a convert, Denise Jelinek is so grateful to be Catholic. She is a wife and adoptive mom to two teenage boys. Although once a binge eater, she is now a Catholic health and weight loss coach, dedicated to helping women grow closer to Christ as they learn to live free of excess weight and emotional eating. Visit her at WeightLossWithTheHOLYspirit.com.