December is always an interesting month. There is the anticipation around receiving and giving gifts and there is the dread of gaining weight on all of the sweets that seem to populate the last two months of the year. As always, I have already enjoyed some of these treats. And ever threatening on the horizon is the need to make new goals and resolutions for the coming change of the year. As a physician, I am always amazed at the number of people who become ill and even pass on at this time of the year. The amount of sadness and depression seems to outweigh the amount of joy for most people. I have below several ideas and suggestions which I try to use to keep depression away myself at this time.
1). Think outside of yourself. For some of us this means family, for some service to those not as fortunate. This may include family, friends, or strangers. There is no one way to reach out, the ideas are as numerous as there are individuals in this world.
2). Plan to forgive any perceived injustices that have occurred. Forgiving does not mean letting abusive behavior continue, it means not letting the poison of resentment continue in my attitude and spirit. We forgive to help ourselves, not the other party.
3). If you have lost loved ones, plan to honor them in some way. Trying to avoid the pain of loss, only makes it more intense. Grief and sorrow seem to shrink when they are consciously given a place, but grow and overtake us when we try to box them away from us.
4). Give. Give. Giving does not have to cost money. We each know what is most important for use to give. It varies with both the person who gives and with the person who receives.
5). On the topic of giving. One of my personal pet peeves, it giving gifts when it is "expected." It seems to me to be better to pass on gifts at all times and in many different ways, even more fun when unexpected. Not sure if I really do that as much as I need to, but a goal.
6). Act silly! One of the best depression busters I know.