• Kate Aronoff, MA, LPC

Holiday Spirit? No thanks

It’s the most wonderful time of the year! But what if it’s not? The holiday season is not always happy for everyone. Issues like the recent tragic shootings, relationship unrest, family strife, financial woes, loss, and serious illness don’t take a holiday. In fact, the holidays can make these issues seem even worse. It can feel painfully artificial to put on a “happy face” at holiday events. Being labeled a “Scrooge” just adds insult to injury. Here are a few tips to make it through the season with a little more jingle in your step.
Express yourself
It can be tempting to push down your emotions, and deny that they are coloring your holiday experience. But the first step to feeling better is admitting that you don’t feel your best. Telling a trusted friend or journaling are some ways to express how you’re feeling.
Drive yourself to distraction
That being said, distracting yourself from your pain with all of the myriad activities and parties this December can actually help you feel better. Getting out with others can pause that continuous loop of sad or negative thoughts that sometimes plays in our heads when we are alone. While this won’t make your feelings or problems disappear, it can sometimes change your perspective on things.
Take care
Self-care is even more crucial during this time of year. The definition of self-care varies widely from person to person. Basically, you want to be doing things that replenish your energy and passion for life. This could be taking a bubble bath, working out, doing a crossword puzzle, baking, etc. Also, make sure you are getting 7-9 hours of sleep per night and eating regular healthy meals. Cookies and milk does not count as a healthy meal - try some almonds instead.

Reach out
It is amazing how hesitant we all are to ask for help, yet we rarely judge others for needing a little assistance sometimes. This could include seeking financial help, emotional support, or help with running errands. Take advantage of this season of giving, and take what you need. There’s no need to struggle alone.
If you are feeling blue this holiday, I can help. Contact Empower Therapy at 541-234-3271 to talk about it.

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