We all struggle when it’s time to get back into our normal routine after a relaxing holiday, especially when it comes to our normal sleep pattern. Whether you’re the type of person to jump straight back into your routine or someone who stays stuck in a holiday mindset for longer than you should, getting “back to normal” somehow always feels like a chore.
There’s the unpacking that must get done, the piles of laundry and of course getting your body and mindset back on track. Sleep-ins and lazy, relaxed mornings must be replaced with productivity and early wake-up calls.
All this to say, there is some science behind what it takes to get back into a routine, especially after a holiday. Read on to find out how to get back into your normal sleep pattern…
According to research, most people take at least three days to adjust to their normal sleep pattern following a holiday. The research revealed that those who take a week off to get away and relax by the sea or in the mountains take around 72 hours to get back into the swing of things.
That time increases to four days if you’ve had a longer two-week break. The study also found that it takes two nights for our sleeping pattern to get back to normal while battling jet lag and getting over late nights and long lie-ins on holiday, especially as research has found why people tend to struggle to sleep well on holiday.
‘Taking time to unwind and relax is vital for overall physical and mental health, but many people may struggle pre and post-holiday,’ says psychologist Dr Meg Arroll.
‘The survey has shown that over half of the participants found it difficult to get back to their routines after a breakaway.
‘So, although holidays can be great at making us forget about the difficulties of day-to-day life, many of us find it hard to readjust when they’re over.
‘Coupled with the stress that comes with preparing for a holiday, whether that’s making sure we get all of the packing done, or handing over workloads to colleagues to handle in your absence, it can sometimes feel like it’s not even worth having a holiday.’
The findings also showed that holiday goers waste two days of their trip feeling anxious about work.
‘If you think that many people only have a week holiday, two days consumed with work anxiety is a big chunk out of their break,’ added Dr Arroll.
So how to get to sleep once you’ve arrived back home?
‘Sleep is all about routine and creating your own ritual is essential for a good night’s rest,’ says Nutritionist and Author Rob Hobson. ‘Applying this when travelling is a good way to keep your sleep on track.
Practical sleep helpers
- Try natural sleep inducers like lavender or eucalyptus essential oils which you can apply to your skin (make sure you mix them with a carrier oil first, coconut is great) or mix them with water, decant into a spray bottle, and voila your own pillow mist!
- Another great sleep helper is chamomile tea– perfect for easing tension.
- Sleeping with an eye mask is a great way to replicate those hefty blackout curtains from those swanky hotels. Try investing in a silk one – much better and cooler than the fleecy ones!
This article originally appeared on womanandhome.com