By Tania Brown
While the holidays may be a joyous time for some, for others it’s not “the most wonderful time of the year.”
Some people love the snow, reindeer, lights and eggnog whereas others absolutely abhor the holidays. In fact, when the holidays roll around, they’d much rather sink into a hole, disappear and come back in January when the coast is clear.
Holidays are stressful for many reasons.
Some people remember loved ones who have passed away over the years or perhaps this is the first year without them. Singles may feel like the “odd one out” or like the “third wheel” at Christmas parties. Funds may be tight for some families wishing they could provide a merrier Christmas. Others have taken on more tasks than they can handle. And, some just suffer from general loneliness and self-reflection.
No matter the reason, depression around the holidays is painful and can take a toll on your life, if you let it. Make an effort to take good care of your mental and physical well-being year-round but especially during the holidays when it’s so easy to fall into a bout of depression.
1. Don’t overextend yourself. There is nothing wrong with doing things on a smaller scale. If you can’t host 50 family members and friends at your home, then don’t. And, if you decide to, there is nothing wrong with requesting help from other family members or friends to pull off an event. Delegate those tasks!
2. Don’t blow your budget. Christmas isn’t about pricey, shiny gifts. Don’t forget the reason for the season. Do what you can do from the heart and let go of the rest.
3. If you’re single, get out of the house! Even if you’re not single, get out of the house as a couple. Try not to stay at home watching re-runs of shows during the holidays. Put on your hottest outfit and GO! You may meet Mr. or Ms. Right at a holiday party right under the mistletoe. Kiss! Kiss!
4. Volunteer to help someone who is less fortunate. There is never a shortage of people in need and agencies looking for helping hands. Donate food to your local food bank. Buy toys to donate to a local drive. Help out at a soup kitchen.
5. Get some exercise! It’s easy to pack on pounds in between the turkey and peach cobbler. Exercise reduces feelings of depression. Hot summer bodies are made in the winter (wink).
6. To cope with the absence of a loved one, celebrate their memory. Create new traditions and remember them in ways that are meaningful and thoughtful.
It’s easy to sink into depression during the holidays but remember that you’re in control. You’ll benefit from social support and the support of your family and friends. Make the best of the season even if it seems like the deck is stacked against you. It won’t always be this way.
Tania @TanicoleB and @BougiePolitics
Tania Brown is the creator and editor of www.politicallybougie.com and former Digital Media Lead for Obama 2012 in Alabama. Follow Tania on Twitter @TaNicoleB.
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