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Christmas Cheer Not Always So Cheerful

Kasey, our senior psychologist, provides some useful tips on how to get through the holiday season if you're struggling and how you can help others who may feel specially lonely during Christmas.

 

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Just 6 more days”, that’s what most of us are saying today. In 6 days, the big man in the red suit will have visited and we will all be spending the day celebrating and being cheerful with family and friends, eating loads of ham and prawns, opening gifts and perhaps engaging in a friendly game of backyard cricket.

But what we sometimes forget is that Christmas and the holiday period aren’t always happy times for everyone. For many people the looming holidays bring on feelings of stress, anxiety and loneliness. Especially this year after the stress related to COVID-19 and the resulting lockdowns. 

For some the pressure to be able to provide gifts to loved ones can bring immense financial stress and this can result in feelings of helplessness. For others who may not have that supportive network of friends and family around to spend the holiday with, feelings of loneliness and isolation can be overwhelming.

Here are a few tips  if you are not feeling so cheerful this holiday season:

  • Connect with others – even neighbours, or charity groups
  • Try not to focus on the idea of ‘The Perfect Christmas’ – make it your own in whatever ways are special to you
  • Stay active and do something fun and interesting 

Here are a couple of tips if you notice someone else struggling this holiday period:

  • Check in with others and ask if there’s anything you can do – it’s often the smallest things that make the biggest difference
  • Remain kind and respectful despite the stress that Christmas often brings

So, this Christmas try to be mindful of others and, if you see someone who looks like they may be struggling with the holidays, remember a simple gesture such as an invite to lunch, a care package of leftovers or even a chat and check-in can make all the difference.

Merry Christmas to everyone and a happy and safe new year.

And remember: if you do need to talk to someone over the holiday period you can contact the following support services at any time:

Lifeline: 13 11 14

Mental Health Line : 1800 011 511

Kids Helpline: 1800 551 800


Kasey is a senior psychologist at We Care NSW. You can request an appointment with Kasey or one of our other psychologists by clicking on the button below:

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