If all the television advertisements, festive movies and carols are to believed, Christmas is the by far the happiest time of the year. After all, what’s not to love about being surrounded by friends, family, delicious food, gifts aplenty and a tipple or two?Unfortunately, this isn’t always the case however and for many people, Christmas is actually filled with sadness, self-reflection, loneliness and anxiety. If you fall into this category, please don’t fear. First of all, you are not alone and secondly, there are many things you can do to help cope with the Christmas blues.
Have modest expectations
First of all, don’t get hung up on what you think Christmas should be about and don’t expect it to pan out like a fairytale. There’s no harm in planning for a special day but if things don’t quite go according to plan, brush it off and focus on the things that are going well.
Do something different
Some people dread Christmas because rather than expecting their day to resemble something out of a Hollywood film, they’re actually bored of the mundane routine that every year brings. If this sounds familiar then plan to do something different - go out to a restaurant for Christmas lunch, go away for a few days or you could even volunteer to do some charity work.
Put together a support network
Whether you’re struggling with an addiction, are feeling lonely or just generally tend to feel down around Christmas time, put together a support network consisting of friends, family and others who feel similarly to you. Every time you feel yourself struggling you can drop them an email, give them a call or even meet up for a coffee.
Don’t assume the worst
Try to go into the holiday season feeling positive. If you’re adamant that you’re going to hate it then you probably will. If you take the festivities as they come and go however and limit your expectations, you may find that you begin to enjoy yourself.
If you’re struggling with depression or anxiety, please feel free to visit our Depression and Anxiety Treatment Programmes page for more information.