Stress and Getting through the Holidays

Sometimes the holidays can bring out an array of mixed emotions for some people like depression, loneliness, anger and sadness. Holidays are supposed to be a time to reunite and rejoice with friends and loved ones, but because holidays are such a nostalgic time they can also bring back memories of a loved one that has passed, breaks ups, or just end of the year regret. These thoughts can bring you down and can hold you back from being happy around this time of year.
Don’t let this sense of rumination crush your holiday spirit. Here are some tips that can help you get through the season festivities without feeling lugubrious.

Avoid Substance Abuse

If you feel like you may have a problem with drinking or abusing drugs, then using substances to numb your pain can add more feelings of depression, mood swings, and hopelessness. Instead, talk to a friend about how you feel or see a guidance counselor or therapist. It’s better to share how you feel than to keep it to yourself.


Staying active during the holidays is a great way to enhance your endorphins. There many ways you can stay active during a colder season. If you’re up to it, try going on hikes, walk, jog, or go climbing. Taking a stroll through nature is a good way to clear your mind. You can even sign up for a workout class if outdoors isn’t your thing. Pilates, yoga, kickboxing, Crossfit or Zumba can be great ways to let out that stress.

Practice Gratitude

It’s easy in this fast paced world to remember to stay grateful. There are many reasons to be grateful in this life from the biggest to the smallest things. When things are feeling overwhelming or start a new habit by starting a gratitude journal, try writing down 3- 5 things you are grateful for that day. It can be anything from acknowledging a loved one, your health, food, someone complimenting your shirt, finding a parking spot or even just the cup of tea that you had in the morning. While it may feel like you are lacking something, other people in the world could be wishing that they had even just 1% of what you possessed.

Develop Healthy Habits

Just because the holidays seem like the time to splurge on junk food, partying, and over spending it doesn’t mean you have to fully commit yourself to such indulgences. Why not start your new year’s resolutions early and adapt your healthy habits now. Exercise, meditation, hobbies, healthy nutrition and knowing yourself worth will give you a head start into your new and improved lifestyle for the year to come.

Most importantly remember that the holidays will pass and that you will be able to begin the New Year with a fresh outlook on life. Check out Dr. McGill’s favorite stress remedies on Fullscript in favorites under this month’s newsletter. Don’t forget that you can always reach out to a professional or a friend if you need to talk about any issues you might still need help with. And no matter what stay optimistic, find reasons to laugh, and be grateful.

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