4 Ways to Beat Holiday Depression
The holidays can be a melancholic and, in some cases, depressive time, especially if you find yourself far from family and loved ones, or if you’re experiencing a life change or illness.
Depression may manifest itself through insomnia, shifting/extreme moods, or even health or emotional instability. Here’s how you can shift your focus outward and upward, changing your outlook for the better.
Recognize what is causing your depression
The holidays are often extra stressful due to family reunions, extra financial responsibilities, obligations, and travel. Any of these events can upset your normal schedule or throw it off completely. Before you can take measures to beat holiday depression, make sure you recognize where it’s coming from so you can deal with the root cause of your problem.
Let go of past resentments
Even if your past has been marred by hurtful events, such as family members, former colleagues, or friends who’ve wronged you, the holidays are a wonderful time to learn how to forgive. Letting go of hard feelings and declaring a new beginning, with a new slate to write on, gives you a chance to give up resentment. It also gives others the chance to realize that you want to reach out and make amends.
Beware of downers
Misery loves company. If you’re feeling down, you may feel like hanging out with others upon whom you can unload your problems. This unloading is completely normal, and even okay, as long as the person you choose can help you in a positive way.
Ideally, this person will not be under a lot of personal stress, as their problems will likely become yours, too. Seek out friends and holiday company who bring you joy or leave your heart a little lighter and happier.
Do something for others
The holidays are a perfect time to give your focus to charitable causes. Thinking of how you can make the days easier on others, and then volunteering your time to help those who may need it, is a wonderful way to forget your own depression, even for a day.
Try this natural mood-booster the next time you’re feeling down: go and try to make someone else happy, and then see if it doesn’t immediately make you feel better.
Remember: happiness is a choice. There’s no better day than today to make a decision in the right direction. Happy holidays!