Whoopee…we are in the midst of the holiday season; chestnuts roasting and all that jazz. For many people (taking into consideration the fact that not everyone’s beliefs are the same) this is the time of year a lot of us come together in cheerful celebration.
However it isn’t unusual for many folk to experience sadness or deep loneliness during the holiday period—which is associated with a condition commonly referred to as “holiday blues” or “holiday depression.”
Let’s face it; the holiday season can come with enough stress to tranquilize an elephant. Here’s the good news—it’s usually short lived once the season has passed and lives return to its normal routine.
In the past I experienced a bout of holiday blues. Initially I didn’t give it much thought and to be honest I simply dealt with it and came to the conclusion I wasn’t a ‘holiday person.’ But in actuality that wasn’t the case. The holidays represented a time when my family gathered for Thanksgiving at my grandparents. It was the only time of year the entire clan might see each other during the year. That meant more to me growing up than I realized at the time. When my beloved grandmother died, the tradition stopped. After that the season became just another series of days in my mind. As a father I enjoyed spoiling my kids with gifts and watching their faces light up with glee as they ripped open carefully wrapped packages. But that was for them—not me.
Now that my children are all grown up and we live hundreds of miles apart, all I have are my memories of holidays spent together and the sound of their loud whispers as they pretended to tip-toe around in order not to wake me before the crack of dawn. Guess what? These pleasant thoughts and the fact I can still recall—vividly—past holidays spent with family has helped me conquer my holiday blues.
Currently I’m blessed to be living new memories with an incredible woman as we create our own holiday traditions, which normally consists of travelling.
In order to overcome this condition, one must first get to the root of its cause. To do so it will take some honesty.
Ask yourself the following question:
“Why do I feel so blue during the holidays?”
Believe it or not, that simple question could open up the door of discovery much like it did for me. The root of my blues centered on the feeling of loss I experienced with my grandmother’s death. Yes it took me many years to get to the root cause, but once I did, I’ve been able to overcome the low feelings I previously felt during this time of year.
Take the time to truly reflect on your own root cause for the holiday blues. Once you discover it, admit it exists and then take the needed actions to overcome it, even if the action is to get some outside assistance.
In doing so, you too can rediscover the enjoyment that comes from the season with a reason.