Beat The Holiday Blues: 5 Simple Ideas

November and December are supposed to be the happiest months of the year, filled with celebration and joy. But are they? For some, stress, unrealistic expectations and even memories surrounding the holidays can trigger feelings of sadness, loneliness and anxiety, commonly known as the “holiday blues.” There’s no way to avoid or circumvent the holiday season, so what can you do?

The secret to beating the holiday blues is preparation. Arm yourself with a variety of coping skills. if plan A doesn’t work then be ready to use plan B. Here are 5 simple tips to help you through these months and beat the holiday blues….

1. Exercise. Hit the gym. Go for a walk at the park or even around the block. Try to be active for at least 30 minutes.

2. Plan ahead. Prioritize and manage your time accordingly. Make a schedule or a to-do-list. Pace yourself.

3. Stay away from alcohol and drugs, they tend to make you even more depressed in the long run.

4. Sleep at least 5-6 hours. Being tired can put you in a bad mood. Rest.

5. Attend Support groups. Socialize. Volunteer. Reach out to friends and family. Ask for help.

Remember your physical and mental well being come first. Try not to get caught up with “shoulds”… this should be like that, I should feel like that, that should be like this.

It will take some effort on your part to beat the holiday blues but who knows, you may find some holiday joy along the way. What do you think? Comment below…

Happy Holidays.

Feeling down? Get Up and Do Something! 20 Ideas

When you’re depressed, I bet nothing will improve your mood or cheer you up. You have no motivation, all you want to do is lay in bed and let your mind think about how bad things are and how much worse they can get.

Will overthinking help you feel any better? Probably not. Will doing absolutely nothing help you feel any better or fix the situation? Probably not. Your mind is working overtime thinking how everything can go wrong and not what you CAN do to make things better. Then what can you do to begin feeling a little better?

Here are 20 things you can start doing today that will improve your mood and help brighten your day. I suggest you set a daily intention and start small. What are you waiting for? Get out of bed and try one today.

1. Listen to music, write the lyrics, then sing loudly, no matter how ridiculous you sound

2. Go outside on a sunny day, sit down, feel the warmth on your skin, notice the beauty of the sky, the clouds, trees, and listen to the birds sing

3. Go to the beach, walk barefoot on the sand, feel the sand between your toes as you look for sea shells on the water shore

4. Help someone out, share a meal, call a friend and ask if they need some help, carry someone’s groceries, help and elderly cross the street or open a door

5. Read a magazine, look for pictures or words that catch your attention and create a vision board

6. Fix something at home, look around for little things that need to be fixed

7. Go online, search for different activities or clubs going on around where you are for example book clubs, exercise classes, social gatherings

8. Start a garden, plant different seeds, tend to it daily and watch different seeds blossom

9. Call a few friends, invite them over for snacks, coffee, or dinner

10. Cook a healthy lunch or dinner, smell the different spices you cook with, feel the different textures of the veggies, steaks, feel the temperature of the different items as you prepare to cook them

11. walk around the block, look around and find different things that you had never noticed before

12. Smile, softly, then a big smile, smile again and again

13. Draw stick figures of yourself, your family, your friends. Try drawing a dog, a cat, a bunny.

14. Look for old pictures, remember old times and memories and create a memory album

15. Make a list of positive qualities, things you are grateful for, dreams, or hopes

16. Attend church regardless of denomination and allow yourself to sit there in silence,observe and listen to a service

17. Watch funny movies, stand up comedy, or anything humorous. Just laugh, laugh a lot.

18. Learn a new language, listen closely to the pronounciation, repeat the sounds as best as you can

19. Serve yourself a glass of water, take a sip, focus on the temperature of the water, the taste, pay attention when you swallow and focus on it as it flows through your body

20. Take a deep breath, inhale the good, exhale the bad and remember everything will get better shortly.

Depression can take you on a downward spiral. No matter how much your mind tells you “no” get up and get active. Who know, you might leave the depression and stumble onto who knows….happiness?