Monday, November 21, 2011

Don't Forget to Take Care of your Mental Health this Holiday Season!

The holidays can be a happy time for many folks but for some it's a somber time that can easily lead to over eating or over drinking.  Here's a little message from my friend, social worker Carey Yazeed, on how to manage emotionally this holiday season.  Enjoy!

Tis the Season to be Blue

Seasons that are supposed to be filled with thanksgiving, joy and merriness are sometimes overshadowed with feelings of hopelessness, sadness and most often, loneliness.  Referred to as the “Holiday Blues” according to Mental Health America, several factors can contribute to a person not having the holiday spirit.  Stress, fatigue, financial problems or the inability to be amongst family and friends are just a few situations that can alter your mood during the holidays. 

 So how can one avoid the “Holiday Blues:”

·         Focus on the good things that are taking place in your life at this very moment versus the past or negative experiences

·         If the holidays have always given you the blues, surround yourself with supportive people who understand and will be there for you.

·         Don’t deprive yourself or your family members of the holidays be saying “We don’t do Thanksgiving or Christmas” because of financial constraints, instead, set spending limits so you won’t overspend and remember, it’s okay to say “NO!”

·         Be grateful for what you do have.  There are many people in the world who are less fortunate than you. 

·         If you’ll be away from family and friends find activities in your area that will allow you to connect with others, like volunteering to feed the homeless. 

·         Take Care of yourself.  You can do this by being mindful of what you eat and those extra calories that we sometimes tend to attract during the holidays from the bounty of foods that will surround us.  Take time for self-relaxation, to rejuvenate your spirit and easy the feeling of stress that may creep up.

Hopefully these suggestions will help to put you in the spirit of the holiday season. ~ Happy Holidays! 

Carey Domino Yazeed is a licensed clinical social worker and a Professor of Social Work at Southern University in Baton Rouge.  For more information on the author please visit her website at

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