5 December 2008
Posted by Nadene under: Nadene's Thoughts .
For Thanksgiving, our family visited my dad’s side of the family. We stuffed ourselves with turkey and duck! Yes I said duck. Apparently it’s an Asian tradition and my cousin in law (right? my cousin’s husband) is Asian. So I tried duck and I actually liked it! I also had a ton of mashed potatoes, stuffing, and of course my favorite, pumpkin pie!!! I did feel a hole in the day, but I tried to focus on the people who were there. I had fun cooking in the kitchen and laughing when the turbo powered hand mixer made the mashed potatoes fly all over the place!
I wanted to share something with you all. A friend of mine gave me a short article handed out by Little Company of Mary Hospital, called “Holiday Stress and Depression: 10 Tips For Coping” I think this actually applies to anyone with a tough situation for the holidays.
“1. Acknowledge your feelings. Be realistic about what emotions you’re likely to feel this season, don’t expect yourself to be cheery if you’re dealing with a difficult situation. Using a journal to express your emotions can provide an outlet and often a sense of relief.
“2. Seek connection and support. Seek connection with family memebers and friends, and attend community, religious or social services. Consider volunteering. Getting involved and hleping others can lift your spirits out of a bad mood.
“3. Be realistic and flexible. As families change and grow, tracitions and rituals often change as well. Accept that you may have to let go of some, and seek to create new ones.
“4. Set differences aside. Try to accept family members and friends as they are, even if they don’t live up to all your expectations. Practice forgiveness. Set aside grievances until a more appropriate time for discussion.
“5. Stick to a budget. The current economy and emphasis on “going green” make it easier to suggest alternatives to extravagant gift giving. Don’t get drawn into the retail industry’s pressure to buy. Set a budget for yourself, and plan out your gift giving.
“6. Don’t bandon healthy habits. Don’t let the holidays become a dietary free-for-all. Some indulgence is OK, but overindulgence only adds to your stess and guilt. Continue to get plenty of sleep and schedule time for physical activity.
“7. Take a breather. Make some time for yourself and pay attention to the details in your environment. A fire in a fireplace, some quiet music, and curling up in a warm blanket are calming to the soul. Spending just 15 minutes alone, without distractions, can refresh you enough to handle daily tasks.
“8. Rethink your resolutions. Goals and intentinal changes are a very positive toolset for your life. Go ahead and make a long list of resolutions, and then pick just one (a small one) to work on for the next three months. Don’t try to change your whole life at once.
“9. Forget about perfection. Accept imperfections in yourself and in others. Your emotions are greatly influenced by your inner self-talk, and critical self-talk is always a downer. Pay attention to your inner self-talk and take control of it, making it jovial and optimistic.
“10. Seek professional help if you need it. Sometimes “holiday blues” can be more serious and you may need professional help. If you find yourself feeling persistently sad, anxious, irritable or hopeless, your’e not suffering from normal holiday stress. Dr. James Brust, the Medical Director of the Bridges Psychiatric Unit at Little Company of Mary-San Pedro Hospital, advises that if these feelings last for several weeks. or cause you to consider any form of harm to yourself or to others, you should call your doctor or a mental health professional. Get help, because excellent help is available.”