For many holidays are a time to rejoice and have fun. However, for some people it is a time of stress, loneliness, anxiety and dysfunction.
E. Christine Moll, chair and professor of counselling and human services at Canisius College and a mental health counsellor, said that suicide rates rise by 10 percent during the holiday season because of troubles with relationships, finances and physical demands.
Moll suggested some tips which you can follow to prevent normal holiday depression from progressing into chronic depression.
The counsellor said that one must acknowledge his or her feelings. If a loved one has recently died or you aren't near your loved ones, realize that it's normal to feel sadness or grief. You can take time off just to cry or express your feelings.
It was suggested that if you feel isolated or down, seek out family members and friends, or community, religious or social services. They can offer support and companionship. Also, getting involved and helping others can lift your spirits and broaden your social circle.
It is important to set differences aside. Try to accept family members and friends as they are, even if they don't live up to all your expectations. Set aside grievances until a more appropriate time for discussion. With stress and activity levels high, the holidays might not be conducive to making quality time for relationships.
Molly said that sticking to a pre-planed budget is another thing that you should take care of. Before you go shopping, decide how much money you can afford to spend on gifts and other items. Then be sure to stick to your budget. If you don't, you could feel anxious and tense for months afterward as you struggle to pay the bills.
The expert said that don't let the holidays become a dietary free-for-all. Some indulgence is OK but overindulgence only adds to your stress and guilt. Have a healthy snack before holiday parties so that you don't go overboard on sweets, cheese or drinks. Continue to get plenty of sleep and schedule time for physical activity.