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Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Why So Glum?

For many reasons, this time of year brings many and mixed emotions to so many people. Bad holiday memories? Losses in and around the holidays? Year end regrets? Whatever the reason, the holiday season is fraught with high intensity. Even those who are carefree stress over holiday preparations. Instead of this time being jolly and happy, it is far too often a time of difficulty.

When everyone around you seems happy, it only intensifies feelings of isolation. So how can you cope without seeming like Scrooge?

First, be good to yourself. You can acknowledge others' happiness without feeling you must comply with their feelings. Find your supports. You know who they are. Trusted friends or family.

Exercise, eat well. These things will also help you through tough times. Indulging in unhealthy habits will only make you feel worse. Guilt and unwanted weight lead you down that slippery slope where you feel like there is no return.

Write. You don't have to be an articulate maker of prose to express your feelings. The writing is for your eyes only, so let it out.

Have a good cry if you need it. If you find it difficult, rent a sad movie. Yes! The benefit of crying over something external still releases toxins through your tears.

Also, laugh. It bolsters the immune system and actually enhances your mood. With the winter bringing a dearth of first run TV, rent comic movies or old comedy shows.

Engage. There is danger in isolating yourself. Others, wrapped up in their holiday celebrations, may not notice your needs. Invite others to your home or arrange to meet with friends.

Soon enough, January will be here, with hope for a better year.

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