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Not-So-Happy Holidays

How to Survive this Fall and Upcoming Winter

The spirit of Halloween has settled itself in as October starts with its golden leaves and chilling winds. It's the perfect weather and time of year to celebrate and have Halloween parties. It's also the start of many holiday festivities and when friends and family prepare for Christmas. 

But many find themselves in a rather depressive mood and more anxious than ever as the holiday season draws closer. Though they wish to be excited and filled with the spirit of the holidays like friends and family are, sometimes severe anxiety can cause stress about family gatherings, parties, and even about answering the door to trick or treaters and Christmas carolers. Though it might sound a bit unreasonable it is very real.  

The dying and wilting plants, trees, and flowers with the cloudy days also have an effect on depression especially if a loved one has passed, making it even harder to get out of bed and to keep feeling motivated. This cloudy, cold, and busy time of year can also cause an increased feeling of getting lost in the shuffle and invisibility. It gets hard to keep up with the overwhelming hustle and bustle of shoppers and gifts when feeling unmotivated and sad. 

Fall and the holidays are not bad and can be uplifting for many but also can be tough. Good thing there are ways to make the daily battle a little easier. Let's go over some ways we can help ourselves out a little this upcoming season.

It's okay to say no.

I have found that when it comes to family gatherings and parties, you don't have to attend them all. Don't be afraid to say no and it's okay to take it slow. You can try talking with your family and friends about it. Most of the time they are understanding and will try their best to help you out. 

Take a break.

Taking some alone time can help you catch your breath, refresh, and prepare yourself for everything you have to do. It also can relieve stress and clear your mind. Try reading a book, going for a walk, a new hobby, or coloring in a coloring book. These are all pretty good ways to spend your alone time. 

It's okay to be sad.

It's okay if you are feeling down. Be honest with yourself, especially if you have lost a loved one. Take your time and allow yourself to feel sad and let yourself cry. Feeling grief is natural and necessary to help you process. Don't ever force yourself to be happy when you aren't, even if it's the holidays.

Reach out to others.

If you are feeling lonely and isolated don't be afraid to say so and reach out to your friends and family or to local churches and groups. Often times you find they are happy to see you and have many events this time of year. Volunteering is also a good way to find friends and lift spirits.   

It isn't always perfect.

Sometimes we stress over making sure everything is perfect or just like last year's. It doesn't always work like that and it doesn't have to. It's okay if you can't make it perfect. It still can be a wonderful and sweet holiday. There are a lot of traditions and it can be hard to keep track. Pick a few to have each year so there isn't as much stress. Try not to overwork yourself and be open to trying new things.

Now not all of these will work and they won't magically make problems disappear but hopefully, they will help you get through this fall and winter. May you have a Happy Halloween and a Happy Holidays.

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Not-So-Happy Holidays
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