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DSN shuts down over the Christmas period, giving our staff a chance to have a rest and a holiday. We re-open in mid January. If you need support over this period, see our contacts page for options.

Merry Christmas, and a Happy New Year!

It’s that time of year again; christmas is suddenly 4 weeks away, and with it comes all the associated stresses; having to send money to buy presents for friends and family, sorting out holiday arrangements, and the stress that can come with spending time with family (especially if it’s been a difficult year). Add to this the worry of an economic downturn, and christmas can start to look like a pretty difficult time for some. 

One article has a few tips for helping to deal with some of the stress. Keep up your self care, and avoid things that can make things worse:

Overeating, eating badly or irregularly, overspending, smoking and drinking more alcohol than usual are ineffective at managing stress and could create health problems, raising stress, not lowering it.

“Pay attention to what’s happening around you, but refrain from getting caught up in doom-and-gloom hype. Take stock of your particular situation and what causes you stress. Reach out to family, friends and trusted advisors. Research shows that receiving support from others is effective in managing stress,” psychologist Katherine Nordal, PhD, APA’s executive director for professional practice, said in a news release accompanying the association’s survey results.

Buying presents for others can end up being very costly, but there can be pressure to give anyway. A compromise may to be to give gifts that don’t cost as much money (but may be more meaningful?):

One way to give and not feel bad about it is to consider smaller gifts, something homemade or gifts of time – say setting aside time to do something special with a loved one, giving homemade baked goods or doing a chore for someone that might be difficult for them or give them some needed break time.

Most importantly, Look after yourself. Make sure you actually get a holiday over the christmas season. Don’t forget to take time out for yourself, to do whatever it is that makes you mentally healthy and happy.

December 2008
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