5 Tips for Beating the Holiday Blues
The holidays are a time for cheer and joy, love, family, and gifts, right? not for everyone...I have a love-hate relationship with the holidays. Sometimes I love them, other times I hate them. For a large portion of my life, I hated them. Often times the holiday season triggers depression in people who are missing loved ones, feeling disappointment, or who are unable to afford what the season has become about. Many people during this time actually come down with holiday blues symptoms such as headaches, insomnia, fatigue, restlessness, boredom, and an overall general feeling of sadness. If you are someone who battles the holiday blues, today I am going to provide you with some tips that can help to make it better.
Tip #1: Redefine Your Ideal Holiday
Who says that your ideal holiday needs to be filled with extravagant dinners, parties, and gifts? Most of the time, the "ideal holiday" is based on childhood memories or holiday movies. There is no definition of what your holiday has to look like. Forget the idea in your head of what a holiday should look like and create a new one. Maybe this involves you taking a vacation, giving yourself a gift, volunteering at an animal shelter, or just doing something you have wanted to do. It's important to be kind to yourself and realize that it's ok to make the holiday what you want it to be.
Tip #2 Practice Acts of Kindness
We all know that many people have forgotten what the holidays are really about. Take time in the month of December to practice one random act of kindness each day. Doing good things for others and expressing gratitude can do wonders for your mental health. Science actually confirms that such behaviors generate positive moods particularly in people who battle with anxiety or depression. By doing something nice for others, you are also doing something nice for yourself.
Tip #3 Drink Lots of Water
Most things that we do around the holiday season contribute to dehydration. Whether we are flying, eating salty foods, or drinking alcohol, our bodies are craving to be hydrated. Did you know that 85% of our brain tissue is water? This is why studies link depression to dehydration. Dehydration energy generation in the brain to decrease. Pair that with an already depressive state and you get some serious holiday blues. Be sure to keep yourself hydrated!
Tip #4 Exercise Regularly
Get yourself active this holiday season! Regular exercise help ease anxiety and depression by releasing feel-good endorphins and taking your mind off worries and breaking up that cycle of negative thought. It also helps to increase confidence!
Tip #5 Accept Your Feelings
There is absolutely nothing wrong with not feeling jolly during the holiday season. There are many people that experience sadness and depression during the holidays. Be kind to yourself and seek support. You are not alone in this.