The following information will help you determine if you need Christmas stress reduction treatment, and even provide some helpful tips to help you avoid the anxiety that seems to get worse and worse every winter.
Do you Need Christmas Stress Treatment?
In determining whether or not you need treatment for holiday stress, ask yourself the following questions:
- Do you find yourself dreading, rather than looking forward to the holidays?
- Do you become obsessed with holiday party planning – always trying to “one up” your previous parties or events held by neighbors and friends?
- Do you drink more alcohol than usual or take drugs as a means of escape before, during or after the Christmas season?
- Do you overspend on gifts and parties, finding yourself stressed out over your finances come January?
If you answered “yes” to any of these questions, you might be a Christmas stress sufferer. Consider the following coping strategies to help you get through the coming holiday season.
Coping with Christmas Stress
Delegate, delegate, delegate. One of the most common sources for personal stress during the holidays comes from trying to take too much responsibility on your shoulders. Find relatives willing to help (or unwilling to for that matter) and shift some of the duties on them.
Don’t drink or do drugs during the holidays. The need to escape into substance abusemay be strong, but don’t resort to drinking or drug use during the winter holidays. By doing so, you will only be fueling more anxiety and post-holiday depression – not to mention putting yourself at risk for addiction.
Don’t play “Keep up with the Joneses.” We place a great deal of stress on ourselves in an attempt to always buy the nicest presents or throw the most lavish parties. Instead, try to focus on what matters most during the holidays – having everyone you love close to you and in good health. One-up-man-ship is a vicious cycle similar to drug addiction – the deeper you fall into it, the harder it is to dig yourself out!
Professional Help for your Christmas Stress
If you have tried the coping strategies above, and still feel depressed or hopeless during or after the holidays, then you might benefit from professional counseling. Counselors who specialize in Christmas stress know all the “triggers” that can cause these negative feelings, and know how to instruct you on avoiding these triggering events, or cope with them in a much more productive manner. Bottom line: these are professionals who understand the seriousness of holiday stress and the impact it is having on your life.