All the parties are over and every present has been opened and marveled over. Houseguests are gone and the last leftovers eaten. A fun time was had by all; so why are some of us so depressed? Some of us spent too much money, so our bank accounts are wanting. Some of us ate too much, so our waistlines are expanding. Realize that you’re not alone! Many people have unrealistic expectations for the holidays. That along with dealing with so much in a short period of time can leave you feeling exhausted and unfulfilled. There are a few things you can do to keep the Christmas spirit going.
It’s a good time to volunteer. Often after the holidays charities need help after the rush of fundraising at years’ end. It is good to think of others less fortunate; it will help you forget your own troubles.
Leave the decorations up a little longer. Nothing cheers me up after a long and dreary day like some beautiful Christmas lights. Many of us are having short gray days in the middle of winter and some bright cheery decorations are just what the doctor ordered. It also keeps the holiday spirit going.
Don’t stay housebound because of the weather. Even though your cheery decorations are inviting, you need to get out. Physical activities like skating or skiing are great for your body and your mind. Check out activities in your community. Museums often have reduced rates in January or see if your library or local community theater have interesting events. Invite a friend out for lunch or dinner. Stay in touch, organize a game night, or bowling party.
If you are still feeling blue by February, it might be time to speak to a professional. It never hurts to have a few sessions to hash out your concerns. Sometimes a third party is the best thing.
KATHLEEN WEAVER-ZECH & DEAN’S TEAM CHICAGO