The Holiday Season often brings unwelcome Stress and Depression for some. And it’s no wonder. The Holidays present a number of demands such as Parties, Shopping, Baking, Cleaning and Entertaining, just to name a few.
But with some practical tips, you can minimize the Stress that accompanies the Holidays.
Try to prevent Stress and Depression in the first place, especially if the Holidays have taken an Emotional toll on you in the past. It’s hard to stop and regroup, especially when Stress is at its peak!
- Acknowledge your feelings – If someone close to you has recently died or you can’t be with loved ones, realize that it’s normal to feel sadness and grief. It’s OK to take time to express your feelings. Realize you can’t force yourself to be happy just because it’s the Holiday Season.
- Be realistic – Understand change is a normal process. The Holidays don’t have to be perfect or just like last year. As families change and grow, Traditions and Rituals often change as well. Choose a few to hold on to and be open to creating new ones.
- Reach out – If you feel lonely or isolated, seek out Community, Religious or Other Social events. They can offer Support and Companionship. Volunteering your time to help others also is a good way to lift your spirits and broaden your friendships.
- Set aside differences – Try to accept others as they are, even if they don’t live up to your expectations. Set aside grievances until a more appropriate time for discussion. And be understanding if others get upset or distressed when something goes awry. Chances are they’re feeling the effects of Holiday Stress and Depression, also.
- Stick to a budget – Before you go Gift and Food Shopping, decide how much Money you can afford to spend. Then stick to your budget. Don’t try to buy happiness with an avalanche of Gifts. Alternatives might be …
Donate to a Charity in someone’s name.
Give homemade Gifts.
Start a Family Gift Exchange.
- Plan ahead – Set aside specific days for specific tasks. Shopping, Baking, Visiting Friends and other Activities.
- Learn to say no – We have all heard the saying “you can’t be in two places at once.” Saying yes when you should say no can leave you feeling resentful and overwhelmed. Friends and Colleagues will understand if you can’t participate in every project or activity.
- Don’t abandon healthy habits – Don’t let the Holidays become a free-for-all. Overindulgence only adds to your stress and guilt. Not to mention how it can suppress your Immune System and lead to potential Illness. Avoid excess Sugar, get plenty of Sleep, and drink plenty of Water.
- Take a breather – Make some time for yourself. Spending just 15 minutes alone, without distractions, may refresh you enough to handle everything you need to do. Find something that reduces stress by clearing your mind, slowing your breathing and restoring inner calm. Some possible ideas…
Taking a walk at night and go stargazing or sightseeing for Holiday Lights.
Listening to soothing music.
Find a peaceful location and read a book.
Take control of the holidays
Don’t let the holidays become something you dread. Instead, take steps to prevent the stress and depression that can descend during the holidays. Learn to recognize your holiday triggers, such as financial pressures or personal demands, so you can combat them before they lead to a meltdown. With a little planning and some positive thinking, you can find peace and joy during the holidays.
Seek Professional help if you need it – Despite your best efforts, you may find yourself feeling persistently sad or anxious, plagued by physical complaints, unable to sleep, irritable and felling hopeless, unable to face routine tasks. If these feelings last for a while, talk to a Medical Provider.
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