Holiday season is all about get togethers, family dinners, shopping for gifts, decorations, drinks, and so much more. But for a lot of people, it is a bit more complicated.It is about stress and anxiety, and that’s not a surprise; commonly known as ‘Holiday Blues’.
There is a dizzying line up of demands and the sheer pressure is more than enough to take a toll on our state of mind; and this year is thrown in Covid into this seasonal funk- and we have a perfect prescription for more stress and anxiety and an increased feeling of loneliness. Nothing seems normal. Heck, even life looks different this year; loss of jobs, loss of loved ones, locked-up in the house for months, change in lifestyle etc.
Thanks to the pandemic, the Holiday Blues just became darker and despite having a lot of friends and family around, most of us might still end up feeling a little lonely because of the travel restrictions and fear of infection.
Are there any ways to make this Holiday look worthwhile in a new way?
Let’s pause and take some time to reflect
This Holiday calls for a pause and some reflection. Think about what is important. This might not make you feel better immediately. However, it will prepare you for the days to come. If you are feeling lonely, try and identify as to why are you feeling lonely? You can either do this on your own or seek a professional help. It might sound a bit too much, but it is pivotal for your mental wellbeing; something you should never ignore or make light of. Will putting more time into your social life benefit you? If you have been distancing yourself from people, then identify the cause. Work with your emotions. If you feel that friends might help you deal with this better, then get out of that bed and reach out to them. Conversely, if you find the idea of confiding in a therapist more appropriate, then prepare yourself to invest your time, money, and energy for the same. Either ways, the end-result of being heard and understood will definitely help you face or deal with your Holiday blues better.
Let’s be realistic
It is now time to accept that our Holidays might not be the same or perfect like the previous one. This might be the perfect time to let go of old traditions, maybe hang onto some, and make space for new ones. Instead of thinking what you “ought to be doing”, involve or engage yourselves in doing things that make you happy. It is natural for a lot of us to compare our lives with others. Try and avoid that as it never does any good, in fact it might just make you feel worse. Remember that the holiday spirit should mean feeling good about yourself first and then if the situation and mind permits, dive into the whirl of the holiday activities.
Let’s reach out
It might seem difficult for some people, but it is perfectly alright to reach out for help. If you are feeling low and lonely, and you feel awkward discussing it with friends and family, reach out to support groups. There are a lot of such groups that can be found online. These support groups ensure that every member is heard and respected.
Another great way to drive away the Holiday blues is by trying to help others, volunteering. It is a great way to boost confidence, combat any form of depression, helps you develop new skills and gives you immense satisfaction. There is a sense of sublime in seeing someone in need smile just because you helped, even when you are feeling low.
Let’s stick to a budget
We know the wonderful effects of retail therapy. So, let’s not fall into that trap. Shopping when you are feeling low might feel great, but it is temporary. In this kind of shopping, we tend to buy useless stuff on a whim and later regret the purchases made. Let us avoid that. When you decide to walk into a store make sure you have a list and stick to the list. Given the job scenario these days, it will be wise to save every penny we can.
Let’s stick to healthy habits
This might sound like those typical regular tips or advice. But, in fact it is an important tip. We often tend to binge eat when we feel low. Not to mention the leaning towards alcohol and other substances. The outcome is never good; it is like going down the rabbit hole. And crawling out of that hole is always difficult to endure. However, a bit of drinking does no harm if that helps you unwind. So, let’s stick to a healthy lifestyle. Make sure that to do your regular workouts. This not only keeps you fit and healthy, but it also helps lift your mood; hello endorphins! Eat healthy and try and get good sleep. Limit the time you spend on social media or reading the NEWS. Given the current world scenario, it might just add to your stress levels. How about some good music, your favourite movies, reading a good book or maybe some Netflix to unwind instead? It is important for you to realize that you are not alone. Most of us are sailing in the same boat. Looks like it is the right time to be thankful that we are still here, even though we are struggling- and that we would make it to the other side; stronger and hopefully happier.