Christmas is traditionally seen as a family happy time, when people are exceptionally nice to one another and are expected to make the effort to spend some time together.
Underestimating the reality of a higher risk of depression over Christmas overall, is crucial to our psychological and emotional wellbeing.
Moreover, these negative feelings are compounded by other factors – for example, we can suddenly feel rather “empty” after relaxing and realizing that, at the moment, we don’t have to meet high expectations people at work usually have of us. We don’t know what to do with ourselves. Our bodies are not used to getting up so late, the holiday food, and not commuting to work. All of a sudden, we don’t have to act, be on guard, or pretend.
We keep overworking ourselves, and then the autumn blues and the Christmas sadness hit. Now take away the madness of the work life (commuting, meeting deadlines, attending meetings, pretentious behaviour) and replace it with Christmas time – turning into “couch potatoes” and stuffing our faces with food that we try so hard to avoid during the year, and to top it all, consuming even larger-than-usual quantities of alcohol etc.
We are left with a recipe for a disaster – a disaster which is not just physical, but emotional and psychological as well. However, there is a solution – if you add some fulfilling activities over the Christmas, apart from spending time with your loved ones, it will help you feel focused and motivated. And we all need that energy to start a new year.