Hello and happy Monday to you all. It is the first Monday after Christmas and the last one of the year, a very important Monday. It’s important because it is the last chance to start things off right in 2015, and your first chance to set the tone for 2016. I urge you to take it seriously if you can.
I say if you can because for some the end of the year is not only stressful but depressing as well. Not everyone enjoys this time of year. Not everyone has a nice family to spend it with. Not everyone can buy gifts and decorate or take time off of work. Not everyone is in a mentally stable state to deal with all the stress and expectations that come this time of year.
Add to that any disappointment you might be feeling about the last year, and a big dose of anxiety about the coming year, and you can see why this is the time of year that can be the hardest time for some.
If you are feeling down, or lost, or hopeless during this time I want you to know you are not alone and that things can get better. I know what it’s like to feel like nothing matters and things are going to go on being crappy forever. I also want to share with you some things that help me when I lose hope, get tired and want to give fighting.
1. You are not crazy.
It can be hard to see everyone running around all cheerful while you are just doing your best to put one foot in front of the other. You might start thinking that something is very wrong with you or that you deserve to be miserable, but that just isn’t true.
A long time ago when things got bad for me I got up the courage to go to therapy. It didn’t last long but one thing I did get out of it was the realization that I was not crazy. I was doing the best I could under the circumstances I was put into.
Depression and anxiety happen for a reason, whether it be outside situations or chemical imbalances, or a combination of the two. It is not weakness and it is not because you are a bad person. It is a natural occurrence and prevalent all over the world, in every race, gender, and class. You are not crazy, you are human, and you can learn to cope with this.
2. This is temporary.
Depression can permanent but most types of depression are actually temporary and resolve on their own with time. While you are depressed that may be hard to believe but it is true. Even when things get really bad, remember that all types of depression are treatable too. You do not have to feel like this forever.
I always try to remember that life has its up’s and down’s, for everyone. It can be frustrating to feel like this and to be unable to do everything you want but the best thing to do is to cope during this time and remember that you will get better. Struggling against it, or beating yourself up about it, or worse, giving into it, will not help.
Recognizing what is happening, taking care of yourself the best you can, and remembering that it will pass, will help you through this tough time.
3. It’s okay to take care of yourself right now.
With it being the holidays and all it can feel really selfish to worry about yourself right now, but I think that the holidays are a perfect time to practice some self-care.
You don’t have to go out and do anything big, you can care for yourself right at home, just start small. A good meal, a hot shower, or even just taking a nap can be enough to help you through the really bad parts. Try to accomplish a small thing if you feel up to it, a load of laundry, a bit of writing, or just getting dressed can be enough to remind you that you can do things!
Here is an excellent interactive self-care guide to get you started. I’ve used it before and while it can’t solve all your problems it can get you into a better state of mind so that you can.
For better or for worse, 2015 is coming to an end, and 2016 will be here before we know it. If you can, do your best to start planning your goals and resolutions now. It will feel good to hit the ground running on New Years Day. If you can’t, that’s okay. Just focus on taking care of yourself and working toward a place of healing, and remember that you are not alone, I’m here for you.
Don’t give up, okay?
Image via cwote, a Tumblr about positivity and self-care.