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Coping with Depression During the Holidays

Deborah O. Day, Psy.D - Wednesday, December 07, 2016


  • Everywhere you look, this time of the year the world around you is wrapped in holiday cheer and festive colors; family traditions at Thanksgiving, and Christmas songs ringing in your ears…
    Most people are pepped up with cheer during the holidays, but for many, this can be the most difficult time of year to survive.
    For some, it starts around Halloween time and carries through into the new year. Whether it’s because of losing someone you love, or any number of other reasons, know this…you are Not alone.
    With society in overdrive commercializing the holidays, it isn’t any wonder that psychologically, it is common for depression to set in during this time. The holidays can be overwhelming for people who seemingly would not have an obvious trigger for depression. This time of year, is infused with sentiment and emotion.

    Possible Triggers:
    • * Death/ Loss of a friend, family member, or loved one
    • * Child birth
    • * Divorce
    • * Retirement/ Change in Careers
    • * Traumatic Events- Injury, Combat, Witnessing Life Traumatic Life Experiences, etcetera
    • * Financial Problems
    • * Alcohol or Drug Use/ Addictions
    • * Childhood Memories/Experiences

    Note, these are just a few things that can trigger depression. There are many factors that can play a role in depressive behavior including but not limited to depressive disorders, and other disorders that are linked to depression (US Department of Veteran Affairs, 2016).

    Symptoms of Depression:
    • * Change in Appetite
    • * Increased Lethargy / Fatigue
    • * Guilt, Unworthiness Feelings
    • * Weight Fluctuations- Gain or Loss
    • * Low Self-Esteem- Feeling down often
    • * Restlessness
    • * Worried
    • * Anxious
    • * Nervous
    • * Alcohol, Tobacco, Drug Use- use of any of these things cater to depression as well are symptoms of depression. If you or someone you know has a problem with these vices, please contact outside help immediately. The severity of issues are not always obvious and acting now is essential in saving someone’s life.
    The above-mentioned are just a short list of symptoms of depression. IF you or someone you know has experienced any of the possible triggers for depression, or you question possible signs of depression, it is important to seek help sooner rather than later. Even if the candidate is yourself, seeking help outside of yourself can help shed light on new possibilities for life, and for coping (US Department of Veteran Affairs, 2016).

    Tips for Coping:

    Seeking Help- Be advised that following these tips are merely a start to finding happiness and a sense building a foundation for strong emotional and mental health. It is important to seek help from others, especially professionals in these fields. Psychological Affiliates have experienced professionals practicing psychology in Orlando and employ the highest levels of integrity principles and discretion. The doctors at Psychological Affiliates have assimilated programs and treatments while the doctors work together to meet each patient’s needs. Providing solutions to real life current situations, therapy is tailor-made for your individual case.

    Connecting- Connecting to others is essential to overcoming depressing. The more we connect to others and feel a sense of belonging, the closer we are to happiness. When we connect with others, we open the door for outside spheres of influence. Sometimes our own thoughts are our worst enemy. Connecting with others interrupts the consistent thoughts of our own minds (, n.d.).

    Getting Up and Out of the House- Sometimes simply changing your scenery can change your thought process and your mood. By entering the World around us whether it is going to the corner store, the library, or the super market, when we engage in these activities, we are forced to interact with others; therefore, giving us more opportunity to connect with those around us (, n.d.).

    Exercise- Exercise changes the chemicals in your body and mind. Stimulating your body has a side effect of stimulating your mind. When this occurs, your thought process takes a shift (, n.d.).

    Sunlight- Exposure to sunlight (note this does not constitute full-on sunbathing. Use discretion with sunblock lotion, etcetera) can increase serotonin levels which promotes a healthy mood. Taking a stroll outside on your lunch break versus sitting in a cafeteria with florescent lighting can boost your mood, refresh your mind, and stimulate new thought. Nature nurtures (, n.d.).
  • There are important factors to remember:
  • Firstly, know that you are not alone in how you feel. Though your case is unique, feeling overwhelmed or just low is not uncommon. There are professionals that seek to help you understand your situation, and that can help improve your quality of life. Daily practices in behavior are merely a start and maintenance in emotional and mental health. Every year many people find the help that they need to live a fuller, happier life. Won't you be one of them this year? Do not put off feeling better, give us a call for a consultation today.
  • Psychological Affiliates Inc, 2737 West Fairbanks Avenue, Winter Park, FL. 32789 Phone: 407-674-5663


    US Department of Veteran Affairs. (2016). Make the Connection. Retrieved from (n.d.). Coping with Depression. Retrieved from


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