Post-Super Bowl Blues?
Feb 9, 2016 - 9:45:26 AM

( - While Denver Broncos fans may be continuing to celebrate the team's Super Bowl victory, the irritability and indecisiveness felt by many fans at the end of the professional football season can be a healthy reminder that sudden change can pose emotional challenges.

"A very abrupt loss of something important to us - something that organizes our days - leaves a very real hole. An emotional pillar is gone," says Robert Shulman, MD, a psychiatrist at Rush University Medical Center. "That loss component can manifest itself into feeling irritable, especially tired or being overwhelmed by the feeling of just not knowing what to do."

Organizing one's life around watching football, or any sport may not be healthy, But understanding that the sudden changes in our routines have consequences is helpful. Knowing that there may be an "emotional hole" immediately after something important is removed from their daily routine allows people to find other activities to fill the void.

'Transitions are stressful'

"Transitions are stressful. Think of  computer programmers working on a large project. They invest themselves personally, not just professionally, for months and when the project is complete, they can feel lost," Shulman said.

Another example is a parent who spends months planning the details of child's wedding. While the bride and groom are enjoying the first days of their honeymoon, that parent may feel depressed.

Shulman points out that feeling down or indecisive after the loss of something important to us should not be confused with the grief that follows when someone close to us dies. Feeling a little lost after a sudden change is normal and short term, but should not be equated with the natural, healthy and often lengthy grieving process that guides people past the death of a loved one.

But for sports fans feeling lost without a big game to watch, Shulman points out that the Chicago Blackhawks are in first place and the first round of college basketball's "March Madness" tournament is only six week away.


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