The holidays have always been a time of high expectations, but for many people, the holiday season is not the most wonderful time of the year.
For many, the holidays are a spotlight on everything that is wrong, or difficult, or challenging. If you suffer from depression, it is likely that the holidays can contribute to feelings of sadness. If you have lost a job, the holidays are likely to be financially stressful as well. If you are lonely, then the experience of a holiday during shelter in place orders will not help your feelings of isolation.
For everyone, the holiday season will look different this year. Bars and restaurants are closed to gatherings; our entertainment options are minimal too. Many people have contracted COVID and we have reached a staggering 300,000+ deaths in our country alone. It can be difficult to cope with these changes, especially if the holidays were that special time when you connected with your loved ones.
In the darker days of winter, many people feel sad, lethargic, and gloomy. The weather is colder and darker during these months keeping people inside more and enjoying life less. The holidays may make these winter blues even worse due to social distancing and shelter in place requirements.
Increased Stress & Anxiety
The holidays can increase stress and anxiety for even the healthiest people. For those who already have heightened anxiety, the holidays can be a dangerous trigger.
The same is true for stress. We all feel the stress of getting just the right gift for a loved one and making sure they are wrapped and delivered in time. Now we have the added consideration of mailing them as we cannot see our extended family and friends in person.
Managing Your Mental Health
The most important thing that you can do to manage your mental health is to acknowledge your feelings. If you are stressed, find ways to relax. If you are anxious, remove the tasks that are overwhelming.
At ACT Family Counseling, we acknowledge the challenges of COVID and mental health, especially during the holidays. This year has been difficult for many reasons and every person’s situation is unique.
Reach out to us for personalized counseling and therapy at any of our 6 convenient locations. Let us help you find peace and joy this holiday season and beyond.