So, you just left Dragon*Con (or a similar event) and if its your first large scale convention, you’re likely feeling a multitude of things; mostly you’ll be experiencing the overwhelming feeling of sadness that the community refers to as “Post-Con” depression“.
Post-Con depression occurs when an individual attends a convention at a high level of excitement and euphoria from being involved in the festivities and then upon departure is hit with the overwhelming feeling of depression, exhaustion and unwillingness to want to return back to normal life functions immediately after the event.
Its not a strange phenomenon whatsoever, most con-goers have the same experience at least once. Lets break down the technical reasons you are likely feeling this way.
- Physical soreness from walking, dancing at parties, being in restrictive cosplay or carrying items to and from various locations.
- If you drank alcohol or excessive amounts of sodas, your body is most likely recovering from whatever you’ve ingested . Dehydration and improper eating can take a toll on your immune system also.
- Mental stress from finding your way around, locating friends, constant interactions with others, talking/chanting, anxiety in large numbers. Many of these things may not be negatives, but it forces your mind to constantly be on alert.
- Lack of rest or opportunity to take a break during con with a large group.
Most of the aforementioned symptoms we don’t pay much mind to at the time as our bodies are pumping out “feel good” chemicals that inhibit most of those minor impairments. Serotonin is the chemical compound our body creates that attribute to our mental interpretations of “pleasure” that we feel when we are having fun or are in a happy state of mind. It only makes sense if you’re having the time of your life at Con, you’ve likely had high exertion of it pretty much each day and slowly hitting a decline nearing departure.
Now that you know you’re not alone in your struggle, here are some ways to cope, THE PLAYER WAY.
- Plan for your next major Con and/or work on your cosplay.
- Unpack as soon as you get home: It helps you snap back to reality.
- Search for photos of yourself on social media, or go through your range of photos and post them so others can possibly see them and tag themselves. I find that Facebook groups are the best places to do so, as people can find/tag friends easier.
- Link up with others you’ve met and make more convention friends. I’ve met many like-minded people through post con networking.
- Slowly acclimate back into your regular hobbies if not immediately expecting to go to con anytime soon (Gaming, gym, hanging with friends and family, ect).
- Rest up and hop back to your normal diet. You’ll be surprised how recharged you’ll feel afterward after proper sleep and a meal not chased with possible toxins.
- Talk (or blog) about the convention to your friends who aren’t privy to the culture. It may encourage them to try it out if you have a great deal to brag about to them, and in turn it allows you an opportunity to share your experiences.
Once you bounce back from your slump, get back out there and be great. You owe it to yourself!