I love chestnuts roasting on an open fire and hearing Christmas music being played on the piano in the CCMH main lobby. This time of year is special for a lot of reasons, but there are also challenges.
Many of us struggle with the stress the holidays bring—parties, shopping, and visiting family members, to name a few. And others suffer depression due to difficulties with family members and past issues that seem especially acute this time of year.
If you are suffering from depression or anxiety during the holidays, I want to encourage you to reach out for help. Reach out to a friend or family member that you trust. Seek out community, religious or other social events that can offer support and companionship. You could even sign up to volunteer to assist others, which could lift your spirits and expand your friendships. (You can also find some tips for coping with stress or depression during the holidays at the Mayo Clinic's
stress management section.)
And if despite your best efforts you find yourself feeling persistently sad or anxious, unable to sleep, irritable, hopeless or unable to face routine chores, talk to your doctor or a
mental health professional. Emotional pain is just as serious as any other health condition. Please, find the strength to reach out.
I hope you all have a blessed holiday season.
If you or someone you know is in emotional crisis, call 1-800-273-TALK (8255)—it’s open 24 hours a day, seven days a week. For more information about learning to recognize the signs of suicide, visit ccmh.net/preventsuicide.