Let’s face it, the holidays can be downright overwhelming. Maybe you feel down due to financial limitations, fatigue, lack of family and personal relationships. Whatever the reason, just know, the holiday blues are more common than you think.
As for me, I am generally an upbeat person. I let go of things I cannot control, improve upon the things I can control, and live with the mindset to create more possibilities as often as I can.
But I’ll be honest, I am not excluded from a random dose of the holiday blues. Sometimes the holidays can overwhelm me and before I know it, I’m sulking in a puddle of the blues.
This happened to me this past weekend.
I was going about my merry way, baking holiday goodies and listening to the holiday classics and suddenly a song that triggers deep sadness came on the radio. This song in particular, makes me miss my sister who lives across the country. I listened to the song in its entirety and continued on with my baking tasks.
Low and behold, another song came on that made me miss a relative of mine that passed of cancer. Pretty soon, I was sitting at my kitchen table with tears running down my cheeks.
But instead of “sucking up and dealing with it”, I sat with my emotions. Quite frankly, I emoted all over my kitchen table, and sat with the pain.
What it made realize is this: Not everyone looks forward to the holidays.
It’s sad, it’s true, and it’s honest.
The holidays can be a downright difficult time for some and can bring on even more stress and blues to our already busy lives.
But it doesn’t have to be this way.
We have a choice. A choice to be blue, a choice to be happy, a choice to be grateful, a choice to feel our emotions…
We can do all the above. But what is most important is what you do with these emotions during this chaotic time of year.
Do you sit with your pain? Sure, but only for a little while.
Do you surrender to the holiday blues? Yes, but again, only for a short moment.
So what do you do? How can you combat the holiday blues?
It’s called ACTION.
Take action. Be productive with your own set of the holiday blues.
HERE ARE 13 WAYS TO BEAT THE HOLIDAY BLUES:
SPRUCE UP YOUR APPEARANCE
Get a haircut, try a new look, dig out those clothes you saved for a special occasion and wear them today!
INVEST IN A MORNING ROUTINE
A morning routine will help set the tone for the day. If you’re feeling a bit blue during this holiday season, then make a conscious effort to start investing in yourself from the moment you wake up. Pick 3 activities you can do right away in the morning to energize your mind, body and spirit. (To give you an example here is a brief introduction to my morning routine: Wake up, drink a glass of hot lemon water, do yoga for 15 minutes, read my goals and daily affirmations, meditate for 10 minutes, express gratitude and appreciation.)
START A NEW HEALTHY HABIT
This one can be simple. What is one thing you can do for yourself every day that takes little time and effort? Could it be stretching before bed? Reading in the morning? Making sure you drink enough water every day?
PAY A VISIT TO FRIEND
Surround yourself with people who make you happy. Don’t go it alone this holiday season, there are people out there that care about you.
BE OF SERVICE TO OTHERS
Volunteer your time to a local charity, offer to help a friend out when it’s least expected, donate excessive resources if you have them.
BREAK FREE FROM MONOTONY
If you’re feeling down this holiday season, it’s because there is a basic need that is not being met. Could you meet your needs by breaking free from routine and changing it up? Take a vacation day and go do something fun! Go out on a Wednesday evening versus waiting until the weekend. Do something new this holiday season and you may find that going against your norm is exactly what you needed.
GET SOME SUN ON YOUR EYES
It can be tough during the bitter cold winter months to get enough sun. However, if you’re not someone who enjoys the cooler weather, make it a point to sit in front of window and soak up some rays. Let the sun warm your skin and soul, just like it will in the coming spring and summer.
READ A BOOK
When we’re feeling a bit down it can be relatively easy to succumb to the noise in our heads. To surrender to bad moods, negativity, emotions and thoughts that do not serve us. Find some inspiring reading material, carry it around with you and read it whenever possible.
SURROUND YOURSELF WITH OTHERS
You can do this in so many ways. First off, turn off social media. Second, talk to a stranger every opportunity you have! You never know what will happen (new friendship or connection might be right around the corner). Third, call up an old friend for coffee. Your options to be around others are unlimited!
Many of us reminisce on the holidays from a perspective gained in our early childhood years. Don’t expect the holidays will feel all light and airy like they once did. I don’t mean to be harsh, but this holiday season will never be like any other holiday season you have experienced before, so make the most of it!
I often find during the winter months I engage in more arts and crafts projects. Like painting or making music. What is something you can do to boost your mood with creativity? Could you make it a point to take a certain number of pictures every day? Try an art class?
Now isn’t the time to shove your face with holiday treats with high hopes of swallowing down your holiday blues. Nope! It’s time to get busy. Do some chores you have been putting off, start a new project, HECK, if you need to…. Throw A Party!
REALIZE THIS ABOUT GIFT GIVING
Christmas, the essence of this holiday is not to fill a space under a decorated tree with lavish gifts that we all wish we had. Instead, the essence, the true spirit of this holiday season is to be with the people you most appreciate. To express gratitude for what you have, to take time to appreciate your higher power, to be of service of others, to slow down and just be.
Often, we can feel inadequate because we can’t keep up with others when it comes to spending copious amounts of money. Let this go. Shine with your energy, be thankful for what you do have and you will find you have more heart and soul to give than anything that could ever be purchased.