The holiday season can often be overwhelming leading to seasonal depression

December 07, 2017 - 2:43 pm
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(WWL.com)

The holiday season is supposed to be a joyous time but can often be overwhelming, causing seasonal depression. Our Lady of the Lake Psychiatric Nurse Glenda Natale says this time of year, they receive more calls for help dealing with the holiday blues. She says we live in a perfectionist society. 

“Don’t compare yourself to your relatives, don’t compare this year to last year’s events. Every year is different, so if we can learn to be mindful, pay attention to what Christmas is about.”

Natale says people who feel like they don’t have a strong support system are at a higher risk for developing holiday depression. She suggests getting out to volunteer or befriending a neighbor, rather than dwelling on past memories with people who are no longer with you.

“Because of how our brains actually work, it’s important to look of meaningful activities and when we do that, the pursuit of gratitude and compassion will make you happier than just the pursuit of happiness.”

Natale says the weather also plays a part in holiday depression with temperatures getting cold and rainy and it gets darker much earlier. She says it’s important to contact your doctor if you continue to have unrelenting thoughts.

“I’m not good enough or it’s not going to change and they’re not able to sleep or they’re not able to eat. Perhaps they find themselves eating too much or sleeping too much, when your patterns change and you can’t get out of that rut.”

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