It is that time again. According to the calculations, there are only 23 days left in 2016! That means there remain only 16 days of shopping left before Christmas. Depending on where you are with your goals, passion, and desires, this could be great news or enough to send you into a panic. The thought of the holidays approaching means different things to us all. For some it is about celebrating a religious practice, for others, it is all about the many facets of decorations. However, for many, the holidays are synonymous with family turmoil, burnout, and dread which often result in holiday blues.
The stress surrounding family visits and fights are enough to make many people wish they could have the joy the season brings without an accompanying headache. Money woes, high expectations, and other holiday hazards can spell trouble for anyone, but especially those prone to depression. Regardless of how great your family is, the holidays are sure to bring up some challenges which, if not properly managed, can result in the holiday blues.
Before getting swept away with all the commercials, store decorations, and chaos, here are three simple ways you can avoid the holiday blues:
- Start the season from a realistic point of view: This time of year there are tons of holiday movies filled with images of families sitting by the fire, singing and spending quality time together. Remember, these are actors! In a real world, family time is not always that simple. These can serve as good motivators but you cannot hold yourself to these unrealistic characters. The holidays will not make your family challenges melt away with a cup of hot cocoa.
- Avoid the emotional roller coasters and joy drainers: Here is the deal, some family members come with a lot of drama, and there is not much that can be done about it. Do not spend this holiday season trying to address or change them. If they are around, find neutral subjects to agree upon and leave the rest for a more appropriate time.
- Exercise discipline when dealing with your finances: Stats show that this time of year leads more people to financial woes than any other time. Why? Often it is because we feel the pressure to spend to compensate for troubles in other areas. You do not have to impress or prove anything. Utilize this season as a time to have restraints so you can enjoy yourself in the year to come.
Your heart may be pounding wondering where the time went. It seems like just yesterday we were preparing for Thanksgiving and now we are only a few days from Christmas. This holiday, take some time to prepare yourself with these helpful hints and hopefully avoid the holiday blues syndrome. This season is about joy, reflection, and good will toward men, not stress, and heartache.
Let this be the year you break the “holiday blues” ritual and really embrace feeling good. No matter what you are facing today, the power to change your perception and make today better is within reach. Choose to break the cycle and when you do, share your experience so others can also break free from the holiday blues.
Opinion by Cherese Jackson (Virginia)
CBS News: 11 tips for avoiding holiday depression triggers
Top Image Courtesy of Kevin Dooley – Flickr License
Inline Image Courtesy of Guillermo Ruiz – Flickr License
Featured Image Courtesy of Luca Rossato – Flickr License