Monday, December 22, 2014

Tips for getting through the holidays

SET REALISTIC EXPECTATIONS   Just because it is the holiday season, family difficulties will not get better.  Prepare yourself mentally.  By anticipating and accepting that the holidays may be difficult, you can stop family blow-ups before they begin. Try to lay down some ground rules if needed.   OPT OUT   If you do go to a family gathering, have a back-up plan.  Let friends know ahead of time they may need to help you to get away if gathering does not seem to be going well.  You could skip it all together.  You could do something you like to do. The holidays are not for everyone.  DON'T BE HARD ON YOURSELF  A perfect holiday only exists in a fantasy world. People get high expectations for how a holiday should be then feel disappointed if it falls short.  TAKE CARE OF YOURSELF    Physically and mentally- Get plenty of rest.  Eat a few more veggies to make-up for the extra desserts.  Watch out how many cups of eggnog you drink- alcohol is a depressant.  Get some exercise.   HELP OTHERS   Nursing homes, soup kitchens, and shelters could use help.  Do something that will make you feel better.  When you are helping others, it is hard for you to feel sorry or bad about yourself.   REMEMBER, THEY ARE NOT AS HAPPY AS YOU THINK THEY ARE    No one is without troubles.  We underestimate how well we are and overestimate how happy or successful others are.   TRY SOMETHING NEW   Get out of your old routine.  Try a new hobby.    DON'T STEW    Be as present and forward-looking as possible.  You cannot undo disappointing Christmases or Hanukkahs in the past.  So, make the most of what actually is.   MONITOR YOURSELF   If you have depression that is more than "the blues", see a doctor immediately.  If you feel you can't, ask someone to call for you.      US News and World Report

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