Thanksgiving is upon us again and therefore Thanksgiving Depression which is part of holiday depression.
For most of us, the holidays are not as joyful as they are touted to be. There are many reasons for this. Many people compare the holiday today to happier ones in the past. Comparisons are not useful because things are always changing. We need to be in the present to enjoy life.
Many people are alone or have lost loved ones with whom they previously enjoyed the holidays.
If you are feeling sad in this holiday season there is hope to change this if you will do a few simple preventative actions before the holidays are upon us.
- PLAN AHEAD Instead of just letting the holiday happen to you plan ahead some things that you will enjoy doing on the holiday. It may be getting outside, seeing a movie, having a great meal, going for a long walk. Plan something with a group of people like going to a meet up. You can find these through meet up.com and they literally have a meet up on everything from going to the movies, to learning to cook Italian to walking on the beach. People at meet ups are usually very friendly because they too are looking to meet new friends.
- MONITOR YOUR THOUGHTS You can learn to manage your mood by monitoring your thoughts. Hers’s how to do that. Ask your observing mind to remind you each time you think a limiting thought . A limiting thought says ” I can’t have that or do that because……. These limiting thoughts are distorted so we need to bust them as they come happen. So catch these thoughts and say to that thought, “I know that you’re real(meaning they have a real effect on the body) but you’re not true. Instead of trying to argue with these limiting thoughts just watch them go bye in your mind, saying to yourself There is a worry going bye.” “There is a fear going bye” and just let them pass as clouds pass across the sky. You will see that you can separate from this if you practice this.
- EXERCISE Exercise raises your mood so plan to spend 30 minutes to an hour a day during the holidays exercising. Doing it outside will boost your mood even more. Health experts say we should spend at least an hour a day outside to be healthy. Plan a specific type of exercise at a specific time for yourself (first thing in the morning is best). This will give you a feeling of accomplishment as well as an energy boost. Also Zumba and Laughing Yoga are excellent mood raisers.
- BE GRATEFUL By setting the intention every morning when you wake up to find one NEW thing during the day to be grateful for. This helps your mind look for the good things in your day. At night write down what the thing you are grateful for. This trains your mind to be on the outlook for good things. Also after a few weeks of this you will have to be creative finding new things to appreciate. This will enhance your awareness as well as your happiness.
- PLAN SOMETHING TO LOOK FORWARD TO If you have a trip or event ( maybe even seeing a movie you have wanted to see) to look forward to this can keep your mood up during any sad times during the holidays.
- GIVE BACK Look for a way to give to people less fortunate than you. Start with the internet and do research on this and you will find a way to give back. It could be at a church, school or retirement home. Be creative and see what you can come up with.