Coping With the Holiday Blues
Holidays are a time of joy and togetherness for families and friends across the nation, but for an individual without those social lines, it can be a time of loneliness and sadness causing a sense of the “blues”. The Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance reports that 35 million Americans will be affected by depression in their lifetime, and it becomes even more prevalent during the holidays.
“Healing is a matter of time, but it is sometimes also a matter of opportunity.” Hippocrates
As an individual who is in recovery from a mental illness, let’s take a moment and reflect on 7 keys steps to practice daily throughout the holiday so the rush of the season doesn’t consume your inner peace:
- Surround yourself with positivism: Choose to be around the individuals who bring out your inner happiness and allow you to be the best possible you. For some this could be family/ friends but for others this could be a neighbor or co-worker who brings you a sense of wholeness.
- Watch your eating habits: It is so easy to overeat throughout the holidays with all the delicious goodies that are provided so allow yourself a treat for the day. Remember sugar/caffeine is an ingredient found in (alcohol, desserts, etc.) and too much of it can cause an imbalance of your emotions and make you more susceptible to mood swings- depression.
- Get ample amount of rest: With all of the parties and shopping that is supplied make sure that you are allowing your body the amount of time it needs to replenish itself internally or your body cannot function at its highest potential. The average adults needs between 7-9 hours so make sleep a priority.
- Include exercise in your daily routine: Exercise does not mean that you have to go to the gym everyday to pump iron, you can get exercise by taking a walk outdoors and smelling the fresh crisp air or choose to take stairs rather than electrical means (elevators, escalators) when going throughout your day. Also, meditation (Yoga, Pilates, breathing techniques) are also considered a form of exercise but they allow the brain to reflect and enter a state of tranquility.
- Be aware of your mental health: If you know that you are not able to cope on a daily basis with your surroundings seek help immediately. If you are able to make the step to make a call for additional support, then you deserve a pat on the back for putting forth an effort to improve yourself and be the best possible you!
Keep in mind that the holidays are only a short duration throughout the year as a whole, so try and relax and take each day as it arrives and conquer it with a fresh outlook and know that help is only a phone call away!