The holidays are supposed to be idyllic times for friends, family and children. For many people the holidays are stressful with overloaded schedules and high expectations that can’t reasonably be met. Spending time with family members who you may not have a great relationship with or being surrounded by children while you are dealing with fertility issues may not be a recipe for happy holidays.
The Mayo Clinic has suggestions for things you should plan on doing to help you through the holidays.
- Maintaining all the holiday traditions every year may be an impossible task. Families and times change and traditions and rituals change as well. Choose some to maintain and think about creating new ones. If adult children can’t be with you try to schedule time together in January when schedules aren’t as tight and time demands are lower.
- Accept family members and friends as they are, don’t wish they could be as you would like them to be. Set aside differences until they can be discussed some other time. If someone else gets upset or stressed by something it might be because they’re feeling the effects of holiday stress or depression.
- Stick to a budget. Don’t try to spend your way to happiness or show how much you love someone by how much money you spend on them. Set a budget and stick to it.
- Set aside specific days for holiday tasks like shopping, baking, visiting friends and other activities. If you’re hosting, plan your menus and make shopping lists. Avoid last minute scrambling that can multiply holiday stress. Ask for help for party prep and cleanup.
- Say no when you need or want to. You can’t be in more than one place at a time and you’ll need some down time for yourself, especially if your job entails a lot of demands at the end of the year.
- Don’t go overboard with food and drink. Many people try to treat holiday stress or depression with alcohol or over eating which is especially easy to do this time of year when we seem to be surrounded by food and drink. You’ll just have the inevitable food or alcohol hangover the next day, making you feel worse.
Seek professional help if you need it. If despite your best efforts, you’re feeling persistently sad or anxious, have difficulty sleeping, are irritable and feeling hopeless and unable to face routine chores, then get help. Contact our office so we can talk about what you’re going through this time of year and how we can help you.