Julia Morgan's original drawings for our Clubhouse, Courtesy of Cal Poly Archives

NOVEMBER 2015 Happy Holidays by Christy Noble

November 24, 2015 10:01 AM | Linda Wilson (Administrator)

As we approach Thanksgiving, we are starting a five-week period called “the holidays”.  We’re supposed to look forward to the holidays and hope that they will be a time of happiness, friendliness and harmony. However, often times our anticipation and excitement turns into feelings of depression, commonly called holiday blues. Symptoms can include headaches, insomnia, uneasiness, anxiety, sadness, intestinal problems, and unnecessary conflict with family and friends.

Part of what happens, in terms of mood and anxiety, may occur because of the stressfulness of the season.  Overeating, overdrinking, and fatigue may also play a role.  The demands of the season are many: shopping, cooking, travel, houseguests, family reunions, parties, more shopping and financial burden.

Here are some tools to help get through the holiday season happily, as well as ways to prevent problems and misery for yourself and your loved ones.

  1. Be reasonable with your schedule.  Don’t overbook yourself into a state of exhaustion.
  2. Decide upon your priorities and stick to them.  Organize your time.
  3. Remember that no matter what our plans, the holidays do not automatically take away feelings of sadness, frustration, anger and fear.
  4. Be careful about resentments related to holidays past.  Declare amnesty with a friend or family member you are holding a grudge for.  Do not feel it is helpful to tell that person every resentment on your laundry list of grievances. Don’t let that person do that to you, either.
  5. Don’t expect the holidays to be as they were when you were a child.  They NEVER are. You are not the same person you were as a child and no one else in the family is either.
  6. Feeling at loose ends?  Like you are under-scheduled or under-planned for the Holidays?  Volunteer to serve holiday dinner at a homeless shelter.  Work with a number of groups that help underprivileged or hospitalized children at the holidays. There are many opportunities for doing community service.  No one can be depressed when they are giving of themselves.
  7. Plan unstructured, low-cost fun holiday activities; window-shop and look at decorations.  Look at people’s Christmas lights on their homes.
  8. If you enjoy a cocktail, don’t let the holidays become a reason for over-indulging.  This will exacerbate feelings of anxiety and depression.
  9. Give yourself a break; create time for yourself to do the things YOU love and need to do for your physical and mental wellness.  Exercise, yoga, massage, spiritual practices, taking long fast walks of any activity that calms you down and gives you a better perspective on what is important in your life.
  10. Most of all, if you find yourself feeling blue remember:  The choice is always yours. The sky is partly sunny, and the glass is half full and revel in our gratitude for our bounty, health, hope, and our courage to face each day with that hope and determination.


  • November 25, 2015 6:30 PM | Joyce Zorger
    Always enjoy reading these words of wisdom. We are always at choice. So for today, I choose to feel great-fullness...and to let go of anything that does not serve me. YES!...And so it is. Joyce with a choice
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