The holidays are quickly approaching. Matter fact, the end of the year is almost here. December will be here next week, and soon Christmas will follow. . You walk into stores and hear Christmas music playing, you see all the festive decorations, all designed to put you in the holiday spirit earlier.
Has anyone else noticed that holiday promotions seem to move up sooner and sooner every year? I mean, this year Halloween hadn’t even come and stores were already putting Christmas items on display. Take a look around you. You walk into any store and almost forget that Thanksgiving comes before Christmas. The fall foliage and brown/orange decorations have been replaced with the red/green/white, the wreaths, ornaments and more.
This is truly to be a festive time, to get people excited (and spend money) for the holidays. But what about those people who do not find pleasure in the holidays? What about the people who become stressed and depressed this time of year? Believe it or not, the holidays trigger depression in many people. Not only that, but many people experience increased stress during the holiday season.
Not everyone is happy this time of year. Holiday depression or the “holiday blues” is real. In fact, about 40% of people experience some sort of blues during the holidays. Various triggers exist for the holiday stress and depression, including:
- Family functions
- Grief from memories of lost loved ones
I have had my share of mental struggles over the years when the holidays approach. Although it may not rise to the level of depression, I have definitely felt holiday stress over the years.
It’s unfair to assume that everyone is happy and this is a joyous time of year for each person you encounter. Many people are just not happy this time of year. It is not uncommon for someone suffering from holiday blues to isolate themselves during this time of year or display attitudes and behaviors that they don’t normally do. The best way to help those around you is to have some understanding, patience, and respect for their feelings.
But what if it is you? What if you are experiencing the holiday blues? What can you do so this time of year is not completely miserable for you.
As we head into the holidays, self-care is just as important now as it is any other time of year. Here are 5 ways you can practice self-care during the holidays.
Disconnect from social media
Does seeing everyone preparing for and celebrating the holidays immediately put a damper on your mood? Guess what? You can make the choice to turn it off. You don’t have to stay connected to your social media. The holidays are a great time to take a social media detox. Give yourself permission to be free of things that make you unhappy. Turn your notifications off. Delete the apps. Do whatever you need to do to get peace of mind. Need help figuring out how to disconnect from social media, check out this blog post “A 7 Day Social Media Detox: Why You Need to Unplug Now.”
Set your priorities
Prioritize your responsibilities during this time. Christmas has become very commercialized over the years with everyone feeling pressure to purchase the latest and greatest gift. However, just because it’s Christmas you still have obligations and responsibilities. Don’t add unnecessary stress by getting so caught up in the commercialization that you ignore what really matters and wind up in an even more stressful situation. Holidays should be all about love, family, and friends. Don’t lose sight of that in the over-commercialization of life.
Listen to cues
Listen to your body. It is always communicating with you. Your body will send cues when you need to rest, take a break, or spend some quiet time alone. Don’t push yourself to make every event, party, potluck, etc. Give yourself time to decompress so that each day you feel refreshed to handle whatever may come.
It’s so easy to focus on all your problem and all you don’t have during the holiday season. However, how about you switch up your mindset? Start focusing on ALL you have to be grateful for. Journal all the positive and happy things happening in your life during the holidays. This is a good way to take your focus on the bad and put it on the good.
Isolation is one of the worst things you can do this time of year. Stay connected with your support system. Family, friends, co-workers, whoever is in your circle do not isolate yourself from them. You don’t have to be alone even when you aren’t feeling your best.
If you are experiencing grief and feel no one around you will understand, find a support group in your area, where you can go and be surrounded by people experience similar emotions as your during this time.
I hope you are able to find inner peace during the holidays.
Here are a few self-care posts that may also help you during this season, “How To Love Yourself Even When It’s Hard“, “10 Ways To Take Better Care of Yourself Now“, & “Finding Time For You: The Busy Mom’s Survival Guide“.
And while you’re at it, grab your free printable “10 Quick and Easy Self-Care Tips for the Busy Woman”.
That’s not all!
Just in time for the holidays, I am excited to announce my upcoming E-book “Take a Mental Health Day, You Deserve It: 101 Self Care Ideas for the Busy Women” This book is full of self-care ideas and tips to not only help you navigate the holidays, but also everyday life. Self-care is a must every day, so why not arm yourselves with the tools you need to effectively practice taking care of yourself. Some of these ideas you may have heard before (but never in this way), while others you probably would never consider a form of self-care.
Download your freebie “10 Quick and Easy Self-Care Tips for the Busy Woman” and be added to the list to be the first to know when the e-book is available.
By the way, I am always looking to feature bloggers on my blog. Want to guest post, get in touch with me to find out how.
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Until Next Time,