When Your Tidings are not Glad, it Can Just Feel Sad
A Season of Sad Things
The holidays can be difficult. Some of us are alone or isolated. Others feel painful feelings of grief and loss or experience mental illness. Some may have a job or a life we are not happy with, or we may have no job. Or we feel unable to match the holiday of our memories.
I recall the Christmases when one grandparent died, then the other, and then later my father. Presents cannot fill the gap when we lose people. Other family and friends may come around us, but things are not the same when we lose loved ones.
Self acceptance may be the greatest gift that you give to yourself this season.
Every store you walk into bases its holiday campaign on mood-altering slogans like “Holiday Joy” and “Make Merry.” Businesses want you and I to feel happy so that we are more easily separated from our hard earned cash.
For many people, the holiday season is a difficult one. Sadness fills our minds and treasured memories only remind us of the losses.
What Can You Do if You Feel Sad and Confused During the Holidays?
- Don’t worry, be happy?
For starters, accept what you cannot change. Some people make it their aim to get you to be happy. You may even tell yourself, “Just be happy!” What we know about mood is that telling yourself, or someone else, to be happy cannot change how we feel.
Other people may seem so happy, but know that each person has a mix of moods. You are not alone. If you guilt yourself for feeling sad, that will only add to your burdens. Self acceptance may be the greatest gift that you give to yourself this season.
- Seasonal moods
Each season of the year can remind you or I of hard things that we may have encountered. It is no accident that Seasonal Affective Disorder exists. Seasons of the year can be especially hard and most professionals recognize that specific times of the calendar year can be challenging. You may struggle in the dark winter months, at anniversaries of losses or with other seasonal issues.
If your moods or low times seem to repeat during one particular season, talking to a Doctor or a Mental Health Professional can be another powerful gift that you unwrap this season.
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Keep it Real
I am an Editor at The Good Men Project. You can find all of my GMP content by clicking here.
Originally published by SMSwaby at The Good Men Project.
Photo by Jake Stimpson