Home TIPS: Dealing with Depression this Holiday Season

TIPS: Dealing with Depression this Holiday Season

You don’t have to simply try to muddle through the holiday season while battling depression. You can make practical changes in your activities, thinking, and self-care routine to make this time of year easier.


Set Realistic Expectations for Yourself

Hollywood, social media and the Hallmark channel set a somewhat unrealistic and unattainable ideal for what the holidays should be like. Getting caught up in what you think you “should” be doing or feeling is easy. Instead, examine yourself and determine what is doable for you and what isn’t.  Set small goals for yourself. Maybe you order takeout for that special day rather than cooking. Or perhaps you don’t feel like dragging all of your decorations out this year. That’s okay. Your mental health is much more important. If you don’t put too much pressure on yourself, you’ll be more likely to enjoy your holidays.


Say No

There’s no rule that says you must attend all social gatherings, send out holiday cards, or keep up with annual traditions. Saying no to things that just aren’t serving you this holiday season can go a long way in helping you battle depression and overwhelm.



Doing something nice for others, especially during the holidays, can be extremely rewarding. Helping those in need is a great way to gain perspective and help you feel a sense of connection and fulfillment.


Start a New Tradition

You don’t have to do the same thing year after year during the holiday season. One way to deal with depression during the holidays is by trying a new way to celebrate. Rather than staying home doing the same thing you always do, plan a little getaway.

Or rather than stressing about the holiday dinner menu, you have a potluck. Starting a new tradition can be fun and exciting, and it takes a lot of pressure off of you so that you can enjoy the season a little more.


Make Time for Yourself

You’ve probably heard the saying, “You can’t pour from an empty cup.” Well, if you’re battling depression during the holiday season, this is especially crucial. Rather than focusing on doing everything you think you “should” be doing (see tip #1), make yourself a priority.

Book a massage, take a day or two off of work or even make a point of taking a walk every lunch break. Whatever it is, taking time for yourself is always a great way to improve your mood.


Stick to a Healthy Diet

Everyone knows that holiday gatherings often come with a plethora of food and drinks. Think balance.. Think healthy!


Get Help

If you feel overwhelmed with sadness, grief, or anxiety, a mental health professional can help you navigate the holidays and beyond.





The WBFJ Wednesday Word is a weekly email written by the WBFJ Staff. It’s short, simple, encouraging and provides a look behind the microphone to the heart of this ministry and the people that help make it happen.

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.