The Holidays Aren't Always Happy
Do the holidays leave you feeling stressed and anxious?
Are you grieving for a loved one and don’t know how to get through the holiday season?
Does it seem like everyone around you is happy and having fun, while you’re feeling left out and lonely?
It’s OK to Not be OK
The holiday season is supposed to be a time of joy and goodwill, but to many people it’s a season of stress and sadness. Financial burdens, grief, addiction, and loneliness seem amplified by the sights and sounds of the season. All that good cheer on the outside can’t always soothe the pain on the inside, especially if you don’t have a great support system. In fact, it can make you feel left out and more alone.
If you’re dreading the holiday season, you’re not alone! It’s OK to not be OK during the holidays. But there are things you can do to make the season a little easier on yourself:
Talk to a counselor –Everyone needs support sometimes. A therapist can help you find ways to cope in difficult times.
Accept your feelings – Allow yourself to feel what you’re going through. You don’t have to pretend that everything is fine all the time.
Set boundaries – Overindulging in food, drink, and spending may be common during the holidays but only leaves you feeling worse and dealing with the consequences later. Set limits to what you’re comfortable eating, drinking, and spending before the season starts.
Learn to say no – The holidays can come with a lot of expectations at work and at home. If you’re stretched too thin or just don’t have the support you need, give yourself permission to say no to invitations, requests for help, or other people’s expectations.
Plan ahead – Waiting until the last minute to shop, cook, or decorate can cause unnecessary stress. Make lists and check them twice! Prepare a polite refusal ahead of time to use when you feel pressured by others.
Take care of your health – The weather, cold and flu season, and holiday expectations can put extra stress on your physical and mental health. A healthy diet including plenty of water and sleep can help you stay your healthiest.
Make yourself laugh – Watch a funny show or read a funny book. Laughter decreases stress hormones and increases endorphins, so-called “feel good” hormones.
Connect – Reaching out to others can help you feel less alone. Call a family member or friend to chat or visit an online support group to talk about how you’re feeling. Volunteering is also a great way to help yourself and others at the same time.
We’re Here for You with In-person and Virtual Appointments
If the holiday season is hard for you, Michigan Psychological Care can help. Our counselors offer convenient and private in-person and telemedicine appointments, so you don’t have to go far to find help. Our telemedicine appointments come to you, wherever you are. It’s easier to face the holidays when you know you’ve got someone on your side.
We are here for you, with telemedicine and in-person appointments at our three convenient locations: