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Coping with holiday stress

9:31 AM, Dec 6, 2012   |    comments
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However, for a lot of people, the season is filled with loneliness, sadness, anxiety and self reflection.

Several factors contribute to this stress, including angel trees, which are good to look at, but they do identify families who are financially insecure and without help on Christmas.

Relationships also evoke anxiety during the holiday season. Coordinating and commuting for family gatherings in many cases is regarded as a hassle instead of something to look forward to. Gas and airfare prices along with security lines at the airport all have people not looking forward to the holidays.

Americans also take the least amount of vacation time in the western world and because of the high expectations from employers, which mean a lot of families do not have the chance to celebrate Christmas together. This contradicts the cliché "I'll be home for Christmas."

Furthermore, Christmas has a lot more emphasis on buying and receiving things, compared to making things like a plate of cookies, fudge or biscotti and then giving them to neighbors.

With the emergence of gift cards, the sense of urgency to buy and wrap a present has dwindled exponentially.

All of these factors dive into the underlying factor of why people are so stressed during the holiday season.

Some tips for taking care of yourself during the holiday season and eliminating depression and stress include:

  • Setting attainable goals. Don't take on more responsibilities than you can handle.
  • Sticking to a budget and make a list before you go shopping. Know how much you can afford for each gift. Make homemade gifts.
  • Give to charity's in someone's name. Save money for an angel gift or another charity.
  • If you are alone, volunteer for something, or find a holiday activity that is free such as Christmas caroling or window shopping.
  • Don't set yourself up for sadness or disappointment by comparing this holiday with past holidays. Just enjoy the present.
  • Celebrate the holidays with your friends or a holiday party; however, cut down on the drinking because it can exacerbate your feelings of depression.
  • Make time for your needs and spend time with caring and supportive people. Reach out and make new friends.
Nate Chisholm contributed to this report.

(KUSA-TV © 2012 Multimedia Holdings Corporation)

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