James Henry admits Wolves need to quickly regain their high standards in the Sky Bet League One promotion race - but insists there is still much to be optimistic about.
The midfielder's delight at returning to action following a month out with a groin problem was tempered by the 2-0 victory Milton Keynes Dons impressively chalked up at Molineux at the weekend.
It was Wolves' second successive defeat and that and the unfortunate loss at Peterborough a fortnight before have cut the distance between second place and the chasing pack.
But Kenny Jackett's men remain three points ahead of Brentford going into a busy festive programme that begins with a first visit to Rotherham's New York Stadium on Saturday.
"We're still in a really good position and we all want to be in those top two spots, although it's at the end of the season that counts," said the on-loan Henry, who despite another slight groin problem looks set to be fit for Saturday.
"There are going to be ups and downs in a long season and we have to make sure there are more ups for us.
"There is no reason to panic but we want to be trying to pull away, not looking over our shoulders at the teams trying to catch us.
"We are all in agreement that the last two results and performances have definitely not been good enough, so we have to put them behind us in a hurry and work hard to make sure we bounce back."
Wolves welcome Crewe and table-topping rivals Leyton Orient to Molineux over Christmas, by which time Henry hopes his temporary club and his parent one Millwall will be close to agreement over a deal to bring him to the West Midlands permanently.
He has impressed with three goals to date - in consecutive games from late October - and might have had another at the weekend.
"We had some chances, myself included, and weren't ruthless enough," he added. "I know I wasn't properly up to speed after my lay-off and will need a game or two to find some extra sharpness, just as I did when I first came here.
"I actually thought we started the game well and then conceded against the run of play. The second goal was from a good shot but was probably going straight to Carl before it was deflected. All that said, the collective response to going behind and then two down wasn't good enough.
"A lot of big clubs, like Leeds, Nottingham Forest and the Sheffield sides, have spent more time in this division than they wanted to and it probably gets harder to get out of it the longer you are in it.
"We know teams will see it as a big game when they come here but we can't use that as an excuse in any way. We are big enough characters to deal with that and have a big squad, which should also help us with the four games we have coming up in a week-and –a-half.
"A big effort is now needed and it's important we get the right diet and mental preparation. It's the same for every club - everything comes thick and fast.
"We see the holiday as a chance to get some more points on the board. Our total is still very impressive and I'm certainly enjoying my time here. I just hope everything is sorted out quickly and I fully become a Wolves player.
"We have big matches coming up and we go into every one thinking we can win. Our aim is to take maximum points from every one."