The statistics for holiday depression are extremely high. How’s that for holiday cheer? This time of year can be joyful and packed with tradition and meaning but it can also be stressful and a time of profound sadness.
Shopping. Wrapping. Baking. Dinners. Parties. Decorating…
All lovely activities when we do them because we want to. Yet many people feel obligated to participate in holiday traditions that cause financial and emotional stress. Spending the holidays checking stuff off of your MUST DO list does not create, ‘the most wonderful time of the year’! We tend to forget that life still happens during the holidays. Bills still need to be paid, kids tended to, homes cleaned and work done.
There is a social expectation to be grateful and joyful during the holidays, even if you are not feeling it.
That was me the Christmas after my father died. While I felt compelled to act happy and full of joy, I actually felt a very deep sadness. I was not in the holiday spirit. So when my local church had a blue Christmas service, I decided to go. The service acknowledged our pain and created space for reflection without social expectations of ‘holiday cheer.’ It was incredibly comforting to have permission to honor my sadness rather than feeling judged.
The holiday blues can also be a great opportunity for healing and they doesn’t usually last past the New Year. They seem to fade away as we get back into the swing of normal life.
If you find yourself deep in sadness, grief or upset in the next few weeks, please know that you are not alone. Try sharing your feelings with a trusted friend, therapist or family member. Ask for support before you are in a situation that traditionally triggers you. Align yourself with trustworthy friends and family members. Say, ‘No’ when you need to and choose what is best for you.
Allow yourself the time and space to rest, relax and recharge. Schedule this time in if you must, it can be vital to your mental health and well-being. Giving to others, especially those who are less fortunate, is a wonderful way to feel connected and lift your spirits. Perhaps you will even start a new holiday tradition of giving time and being of service.
Lastly, allow yourself to be where you are, without judgment. The only way to truly heal is through completely feeling and honoring your emotions. Sometimes pain is inevitable. So if you are suffering this holiday season, know that I will be doing a compassion meditation for you and our entire Daily Love family on Christmas Eve. I hope you feel me
Make a conscious choice to be where you are with the faith that:
Because it will.
I encourage you to rest, meditate and always always take care of you
Sending you love & comfort this holiday season.
Love Love Love
As a licensed therapist, transformation coach, and mentor to well-known personalities in wellness, empowerment, and entertainment, Terri Cole is honored to help clients, and now listeners like you, remain present and grounded, despite life’s complexities. She provides sustainable, action-oriented solutions you can implement TODAY that allow you to live a life that thrills you. Follow Terri on Twitter @terri_cole.