Hello loves!! You may have noticed that we have started our Holiday Series (Blogmas)! Throughout this month, we will be posting a series of Christmas related posts ranging from recipes, decor, outfit ideas etc. So, watch this space as we have TONs of fun posts planned for the month of December!
Today I wanted to talk about something a little bit more sombre. Depression is not really something we like to talk about as a society- especially this time of the year when we are ‘supposed’ to be happy and jovial! So this post may not be what one would expect in a Holiday ‘Blogmas’ series, but I think its an important topic that we should not shy away from.
There is a huge misconception about what depression is and what it is not. The official definition of depression is complex.. and sometimes hard to understand. To summarize it as best I can, it can be defined as a medical condition that negatively affects how you feel, the way you think and how you act. While this is an oversimplification, I want to highlight the fact that depression is serious and should not be taken lightly.
There are many reasons why this season in particular may be difficult for people. The stress and anxiety that is often associated with this season can cause some who are normally content, to feel a greater sense of loneliness. Some may get overwhelmed with all the activity that goes on in this season that they lose the sense of joy that they are supposed to have and instead feel overwhelmed. There are families going through significant financial burdens- and of course the pressure to spend $$ only makes things worse. Some people may also be dealing with loss or even difficult memories associated with the season.
Whatever the situation may be, it is important to recognize that this season is difficult for many.
Dealing with Depression
So how do we deal? If you are feeling down while everyone else seems to be buzzing with holiday glee, here are some tips to help you cope.
Giving back to others can help to take the focus off yourself and focus on someone who is worse off than you. When you do this, it is amazing how quickly depression can lift. Begin to put things in perspective, count your blessings and be grateful for what you have- no matter how small it may be.
2. Don’t give in to expectations
The Holidays can be a very overwhelming time for many. There is so much to do and the pressure to live up to other peoples expectation is great. Don’t be afraid to say NO if you cannot do what you are being asked to do. Learn to prioritize and limit your activities to what you know that you can handle.
3. Take care of yourself
Treat yourself like the treasure you are. Buy yourself a Christmas gift, go on a trip or plan a spa day just for you. These are all ideas of things that you can do to treat yourself. Don’t neglect the little things that make you feel good too! You can come up with some activities like reading a book or napping and write them out on your calendar so you can look forward to them.
It is important to note that during this season, we have poor weather and darker days.. the effect that lack of sunlight can have on your mood is real guys. Take time to sit by a window when you can or go for walks in the middle of the day!
4. Get help
It is really important to recognize when you need to get help. Whether you need to talk to a friend or a professional, this is an important step. Depression is not something to be embarrassed about… it is also not something to take lightly, so seeking appropriate help is really important.
5. Renew your mind
While this is easier said than done, this is one of the most important steps in dealing with seasonal depression. Speak positive words over your life! Surround yourself with positive people who you can be yourself around and who are invested in seeing you healthy. When I need to renew my mind, I declare inspirational words over my life. I also like to meditate on bible verses.
Heres on of my favourite verses: Isaiah 41:10 -So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.
With this, I am reminded that The Lord will strengthen me no matter the circumstances I face.
Other great verses to meditate on are: Isaiah 40:29, Deuteronomy 31:8, Psalm 32:10 and Psalm 37: 23-24.
The holidays are difficult for many. While not all people with depression will present in the same way, we need to respond by being sensitive to those around us and checking up on loved ones regularly. Display random acts of kindness to people who you know.. and don’t know. You never know the difference that could make on someones life.
Can you think of some ways to help someone going through the holiday blue? Let me know in the comments below 🙂
2 Corinthians 1:3-4- Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God.