For many people, holiday perceptions and expectations only ignite -- or increase -- feelings of isolation and loneliness. Those feelings can lead to depression. So what can you do to help mitigate the "holiday blues?" The California Association of Marriage and Family Therapists offer the following survival tips:
-- Go anyway. Don't opt out of invitations because you "have no one to go with." Summon the courage to attend events by yourself with grace and style.
-- Plan the perfect solo date. Go on a hike, to the movies, the park, or museum. Pamper yourself at a spa. You can go wherever you want and it'll be the perfect occasion for you, since you picked it.
-- Reach out. Just because you feel alone it doesn't mean you can't connect with others. Families and friends may be far away, but they are only a phone call away. Let people know you care and you're thinking of them during this time.
-- Discover a hobby. Remember when you wanted to learn how to play the guitar or how to knit, but you never had the time? Well, here is your chance to pick up that Fender and rock out! The holiday season is an excellent time to find new hobbies or brush up on old ones.
-- Take advantage of time off. The holiday season often means time off from work or school. Use this time to breathe deeply, unwind, and relieve the stresses you've built up during the year.
-- Volunteer. Nonprofit and community service agencies often need a helping hand during the holiday season. Find an organization that resonates with your values and pitch in.
-- Plan a potluck. Invite your acquaintances and co-workers over for a get-together. Tell everyone to bring their favorite dish to contribute to the meal.
-- Get a pet. Pets provide unconditional love and good company. If you can't have a pet where you live, volunteer at the local animal rescue center.
-- Start a project. Go ahead and redecorate the bathroom or paint the house. It'll give your living areas a face lift and will engage you in creating something just right for you.
Loneliness is not easy to overcome and during the holidays it can seem even harder. If you're tired and afraid of being alone, a Marriage and Family Therapist can help you manage your feelings and adopt new ways of reaching out. To learn more about family therapy or to locate a therapist in your area, visit http://www.TherapistFinder.com.
The California Association of Marriage and Family Therapists, with 27
chapters throughout the state, is an independent professional organization,
representing the interests of licensed marriage and family therapists. CAMFT
provides TherapistFinder.com as a resource to the public looking for marriage
and family therapists located in
SOURCE California Association of Marriage and Family Therapists