Surviving the holiday season

the back end of December can be a joyful time, filled with people, food and for some presents. But when you don’t feel too well to begin with its probably less fun and even difficult to get through . This are my top 5 tips to get through to January.


Tip 1: reduce stress

this season is packed with stress for everyone and to my knowledge theres no mental illness that isn’t aggravated by stress. You are the expert on your own illness and also what stresses you out the most, trust that you know best and act accordingly. An idea can be to talk it over with those that support you (professionals or family and friends). You can time-limit visits or parties or delegate tasks to others. Going out for dinner, either to a restaurant or with those you care about can be a good way to get out off making Christmas dinner.


Tip 2 : not completely alone all the time

it can be quite depressing to be alone at home, especially on a day that you know others aren’t. The best thing is if you have loved once where you can be with, either for the days or a couple hours. I am aware that not everyone has someone and for those it can be an idea to go to church. even if you are like me not religious at all it can be nice to have people around you and most are supportive and warm especially round Christmas.


Tip 3 : remember, enjoyment isn’t an obligation

what I hear a lot is that people feel that they have to be happy or festive these days. And I get that, I use to feel that way too, that there is a certain way one is suppose to feel and I would get even more upset because I didn’t feel that way. Now I realize that the stress that I’ve put on myself by thinking that way was making me feel a lot worse. Now I try not to worry about what I am suppose to feel or what other may expect me to feel, but just take things as they are. If I enjoy myself its a perk and if not then that’s not something to feel guilty about and its not failing either.


Tip 4: there is always someone to talk to

it can be that your regular helpers are on holiday but that doesn’t mean you are completely on your own. When needed there are always crisis services that you can call, do call them when you need it. If they are wise (and they usually are) they will expect to have more calls because a lot of support workers are out. They also understand that the holidays are difficult for many so don’t feel guilty to call for support. The Samaritans are there as always if you just need a friendly ear or advise.


Tip 5: if you can’t deal with it, don’t

if you really aren’t feeling up to holidays then treat it like any other day, you are perfectly allowed to completely ignore Christmas and new years eve.



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