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Dealing with Seasonal Emotional Overload: A Holiday Guide

The holiday season is upon us, bringing joy, cheer, and festivities for everyone to enjoy. However, for some, the holidays may trigger strong emotional responses, leading to anxiety, stress, and depression. Seasonal emotional overload can be a challenging experience, making it difficult for people to fully participate in the holiday celebrations and enjoy the company of their loved ones. If you're experiencing emotional overload this holiday season, you're not alone. In this guide, we'll explore effective ways to deal with seasonal emotional overload and make the most out of the holiday season.

  1. Acknowledge your feelings - Recognize that it's okay to feel stressed or anxious during the holiday season. Allow yourself to feel these emotions and acknowledge that they are valid. Suppressing your emotions will only lead to more stress and anxiety. Instead, try to express your feelings in a healthy way, such as talking to a trusted friend or writing in a journal.

  2. Manage your expectations - While the holiday season is often portrayed as a time of warmth and togetherness, it's important to understand that it can also be a challenging time for many. Try not to set unrealistic expectations for yourself or others. Manage your expectations around the amount of time, money, and energy you're able to invest in the holiday season. This will help alleviate some of the stress that comes with trying to meet grandiose expectations.

  3. Practice self-care - Taking care of yourself is essential to maintaining your mental and emotional wellbeing during the holiday season. Incorporate healthy habits into your daily routine, such as exercise, meditation, or even just taking a relaxing bath. Set aside "me time" to indulge in activities that make you feel happy, recharged, and fulfilled.

  4. Stay connected - Isolation can exacerbate feelings of anxiety and depression. While it's important to maintain proper social distancing protocols during the pandemic, technology allows us to still stay in touch with loved ones virtually. Make it a point to connect with your friends and family over the phone or video chat. Join virtual holiday events or participate in online communities that share your interests. Staying connected can lift your mood and offer a sense of belonging, especially during the holiday season.

  5. Seek professional help - If you're experiencing severe symptoms of depression or anxiety, consider seeking professional help. The holiday season can magnify mental health issues, and it's important to take them seriously. A mental health professional can provide you with tools and strategies to address seasonal emotional overload effectively.

The holidays can be a rollercoaster of emotions for many, but that doesn't mean you have to suffer in silence. By acknowledging your feelings, managing your expectations, practicing self-care, staying connected, and seeking professional help when needed, you can navigate seasonal emotional overload and make the most out of the holiday season. Remember, it's normal to experience emotional highs and lows, and it's okay to ask for help when you need it. Enjoy the holiday season with the knowledge that you're capable of handling whatever emotions come your way. Happy holidays!

Northeast Missouri Health Council, Partners for a lifetime of health

Medical, Dental, and Behavioral Clinics in Kirksville, Missouri, Macon, Missouri, Milan, Missouri, Memphis, Missouri, and Kahoka, Missouri. Visit our website to find the nearest clinic to you.



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