The festive season isn’t full of seasonal cheer and joy for everyone, and if you’re struggling to cope with depression at this time of year, it’s important for you to know that you’re by no means alone. Millions of people worldwide find the holiday season a particularly difficult time, but there are some steps you can take to make it a little more manageable:
Seasonal depression and its symptoms:
There are multiple symptoms and causes of depression, but it is commonly defined as a persistent low mood that can have a devastatingly negative effect upon your everyday life. While mental health issues can affect us at any time of the year, the festive period brings often with it a whole host of social and financial pressures, and can quickly induce feelings of irritability, low self-worth, sadness and restlessness.
Here’s what you can do to try and combat seasonal depression:
While this list is not exhaustive, these are good steps that you can take to help see you through the festive period, and to ensure that not only do you manage to cope better, but that you get the chance to experience some festive cheer, too:
Talk to your healthcare professional
If you’re worried about your symptoms of depression and are struggling to manage them on your own or with the help of friends, then you should speak to your healthcare professional, whether that’s your doctor or your therapist. Some medications might enable you to cope better with your depression and talking therapies with qualified counselors can help you to understand your condition and its triggers.
Ditch the junk
The festive period is a time of indulgence for many, but over-indulgence isn’t good for anyone, whether you’re mentally unwell or not. Do treat yourself to some of the foods you love to eat at this time of the year, but moderation is key, and you should try to include fresh fruits and vegetables in your diet. It can also be tempting to consume more alcohol over the holidays, especially if you’ve been invited out socially, but be careful of how doing so may hamper effort to control your depression, and you may end up feeling worse.
The benefits of regular exercise have long been heralded as a cure for many physical ailments and illnesses of the mind, and while a few sessions at the gym or a long run every morning will not make your depression go away, it will certainly help to reduce your symptoms.
Find some quiet time
Some self-help techniques are a great way of taking time out of your busy schedule to focus on yourself, and if you can sit quietly somewhere and meditate, you may find yourself feeling calmer and more in control of things at this time of year.
Whatever your plans for the festive period, do your best to keep things from getting to the point where you feel out of control or so miserable that you can’t face things, and always try to find time to address you and your needs. If you need help, please reach out to a counselor who can lend a compassionate ear. You are important, and your feelings count.
Learn more at carlscounseling.com