There are many reasons why this upcoming holiday season may be challenging for us. For example, it may be hard for us to organize everyone’s schedules and manage all our numerous holiday commitments. In addition, isolation is incredibly difficult at this time of year, when so much emphasis is placed on socializing. On top of this, many people find the holidays difficult due to family feuds and misunderstandings.
The holidays also coincide with the onset of winter, when the days shorten, and the temperatures fall. Seasonal depression and seasonal affective disorder (SAD) can develop, potentially interfering with our enjoyment of the holiday season. Depression can make even routine chores more difficult to finish. Or it may lead to us developing unhealthy coping mechanisms. No matter what, we deserve to have a nice holiday season, so if we are having difficulty, we should prioritize asking for help.
Finding Help for Mental Health Challenges
The holidays can be a stressful, depressing, and even lonely time of year. There are a few red flags to look for that could point to something more serious going on in our lives. We should be on the lookout for frequent feelings of depression and hopelessness, as well as a loss of interest in activities we used to enjoy. Other signs that we should get help include feeling anxious, nervous, or on edge most of the time, or having trouble sleeping. When faced with a difficult time of year, there are numerous ways to manage and receive support to help us maintain our mental health.
NOTE: Anyone who is in crisis or experiencing thoughts of self-harm or suicide should reach out to the 24/7 988 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline through phone, chat, or text message.
If we are struggling but not in crisis, we can make an appointment with a therapist. If we don’t have a therapist but believe one might be helpful, we can investigate finding one who is either located nearby or can be accessed remotely. If we are unsure about investing in therapy, we can always seek advice from a trusted loved one. Talking to a close family member or friend about our problems can help us figure out how to better manage our own emotions.
Getting Addiction Recovery Help
Drug addiction is powerful, and without access to a treatment program, many people are unable to overcome their addiction. This can lead them to be disconnected from relationships or be unable to work. While detox should not be considered a cure for addiction, it’s an important first step toward recovery. If someone we care about is battling addiction this holiday season, there are numerous drug rehab options available. Each one helps in a different way, and there isn’t always a right or wrong choice.
We might suggest that our loved one who is struggling find a therapist who uses cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT). CBT is a treatment approach that focuses on a person’s relationship between thoughts, feelings, and behaviors. On the other hand, we might suggest an inpatient treatment program like New Day Recovery Services, to use a local example of a recovery option in Texas, so that someone can focus on their recovery without the distractions of everyday life. In still other cases, we might recommend someone try a wilderness therapy program that uses the natural environment to help patients recover from addiction. For rehab to work, someone needs to find a type of treatment that they feel comfortable with and can commit to.
Bill Payment Assistance
While many of us talk about the cost of the holiday season, for some of us, paying our bills will be a real financial hardship. It is impossible to enjoy the holidays if we are worried about choosing between putting food on the table and keeping our home warm this winter. Financial hardship negatively impacts our mental health.We will be glad to hear there are a variety of government programs to assist us with the payment of our bills. For example, the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP), can assist with paying heating or cooling bills and for emergency services in cases of energy crises like utility shutoffs. LIHEAP can also help with weatherization, making our home more energy efficient and lowering our utility bills.