For most, Christmas is the most wonderful, happiest time of the year. Unfortunately this is not true for everyone. Indeed, a large number of people that seem on top of the world around the Christmas holidays may actually be feeling horrible deep down inside. There are ample reasons for their problems: In this modern society we live in, the pressures around us are greater than ever. Rather than improving, this actually increases around Christmas, as the weight of expectation on so many levels can drag many of us down. Factors such as money, family and even the weather can all take an active role in making us feel depressed during a time when we are expected to be radiating happiness, joy and love. If you’re in a similar predicament, it may help to know that there are a number of ways to help combat and prevent Christmas depression.
Financial pressures around Christmas are usually greater than during any other time of the year. Many people get themselves into awful debt around this time, temporarily easing the pressure somewhat, yet ultimately making it worse for themselves in the following year. Whether buying for children, friends or family, the expectation to ‘spend, spend, spend’ is everywhere. Advertisers get into gear as soon as Halloween is over, and then subject us to a relentless barrage of clever marketing ploys to part us with our hard earned cash. Thankfully, you can take active steps to mend this situation.
In truth, most of the people we buy for are do not care about how much we spend on them; people just want to be together this time of year. Making a solid list of what to buy and for whom, then cutting everything unnecessary from it is a solid way of saving money. Start your Christmas shopping early to prevent undue pressure closer to the December 25th deadline. Decorate minimally around your home; splurging on expensive decorations is not needed and can save money and heartache! Prepare yourself carefully and depression from your finances around Christmas can be lessened greatly and maybe even prevented altogether.
Christmas can be an awfully lonely time of year if you do not have family, friends or a significant other to share it with. At a time when everyone else is seen to be celebrating together, loneliness can catch up with you in the most painful way. Even for people with a good family or friend structure around them, depression can strike unknowingly. Many people with young families can feel quite depressed around Christmas due to the weight of expectation of how much they have to spend on their children. Again our advice is to plan early and to void buying into all the hype. You will find your children are not as greedy as the ruthless advertisers are suggesting! Enjoy the time you’re spending together and try to appreciate each other. If you’re one of those prone to feeling alone at Christmas, do remember and trust that you are not. There is always someone you can call upon, whether on a personal or professional level. In the end, Christmas will come and go; feeling depressed for what is ultimately just another day of the year is not worth the heartache.
As winter rolls in, the cold, bad weather and abundance of bugs everywhere can make even the most positive person feel downright miserable. Indeed, studies have shown that SAD (Seasonal Affective Disorder) affects up to 7% of the British population. Looking after one’s health and getting regular exercise, preferably outdoors can be a great way to beat the winter blues. Winter and especially Christmas is a great excuse to sit in, keep warm and eat and drink merrily. It will not be long, though, before all the eating and drinking catches up with us, leading to an inevitable comedown.
Instead, go easy on the alcohol, itself a natural depressant, and try and eat a little healthier. You’ll find that this will make Christmas a lot more enjoyable. Vitamin B & D are very low in our bodies during the winter months; supplement these if you can. Always remember that a healthy body equals a healthy mind! By keeping this points in mind, Christmas may not turn into the most wonderful, happiest time of the year. But it can still be a time you’ll remember with fondness.
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Reporting from London, William Masters is known as a leading source of high-class finance journalism.