'Life goes on': Bill English not crying over election results

National Party leader Bill English is settling into life in the opposition party.

Mr English told RadioLIVE losing the election was a natural disappointment, but "life goes on".

"The system requires us to adopt a new role. The people who voted for us are still trying to get their heads around the fact that the Government changed.

"People need good government, and a strong opposition is part of good government."

When asked if he cried in the days following Winston Peters' decision, Mr English scoffed.

"No. Look, it's politics. You can get good opportunities, you can lose good opportunities."

Mr English confirmed his commitment to leading the National Party, but did not specify for how long. He told RadioLIVE he doesn't expect party members to challenge his leadership.

"Leadership is always about performance. If you perform well people support you; if you don't you can lose support."

He said any successor would be worked out by the party when the time comes.

Mr English said Labour seems to be having "a bit of trouble getting themselves stabilised".

"All I can see is a leader trying to find her feet with a team that didn't really expect to be in Government - quite a lot of backsliding and misjudgement going on and it's not giving them a clean start, frankly."

Reflecting on National's campaign, Mr English said he was surprised how much he thrived in the energy of the public.

"I enjoyed the intensity of it. This was about real issues that mattered to me, but certainly mattered to the public."

Since moving into the Opposition, Mr English has had to adjust to life without the protection service provided to the Prime Minister, but he said he had begun to enjoy getting around by himself.

Mr English said he enjoyed the pressure and tension of the role of Prime Minister, and it would take a while to get used to the pace of opposition.

"There's certainly more time. You get off the government machine that provides enormous momentum and energy.

"The first few weeks you feel like you're in the middle of a paddock where everything else has disappeared. The important thing is to get on with the job. I do have more time to spend communicating with my kids and with friends and doing things around home."

Mr English said his family holiday down south would last a bit longer this Christmas than it did when National was in Government.