For many, the holidays bring family traditions, gathering of family, and sharing of gifts. But when the holidays bring more than a little stress it can often be a very difficult season. When feelings of depression and anxiety replace feelings of joy and happiness it can leave us feeling alone and isolated.
You Are Not Alone
Approximately 15 million Americans suffer from degrees of depression. For various reasons that could include a death in the family, divorce, or a change in finances, feelings of depression are deepened during the holidays. It is important to remember that we are not alone and there are steps that can be taken to make a difficult season a little lighter.
A Holistic Approach
- Diet—Tis the season for sugar but try to limit the amount of sugar intake. Stable blood sugar can mean a stable mood.
- Exercise—Even a gentle walk can improve mood by releasing endorphins. It can also be a time to work through the emotions.
- Talk—Talk to someone you can trust. Talking through our feelings can help us see expectations we may be placing on ourselves. We could gain a new perspective.
- Supplements—Taking a good multi-vitamin during times of stress can help our body from becoming depleted of important nutrition. Vitamin D is particularly helpful during the winter months when we don’t get outside as often.
The brain has a more direct connection with the sense of smell than any other of our senses. The sense of smell is tied to the limbic system, the part of the brain associated with emotions and is responsible for alerting us to danger and creating positive or negative feelings. Different scents will determine a reaction in this emotional part of the brain which in turn affects the release of neurotransmitters. Smelling an essential oil can affect our emotional state faster than anything we can ingest. Here are some Essential Oils that can be very uplifting:
- Frankincense—This oil is so closely related to Christmas as it was one of the gifts brought to Mary and Joseph after the birth of Jesus. This oil is refreshing, uplifting and helps ease muscle tension related to stress.
- Myrrh—Another gift brought to Jesus, Myrrh helps a person to find inner peace and stillness when feeling anxious.
- Patchouli—This oil is very helpful during time of over-thinking and worry.
- Helichrysum—Very helpful when one feels emotionally stuck
- Bergamot—Uplifting and refreshing
- Lemon Balm—Uplifting, helping to lift depression
- Clary Sage—Particularly helpful for women, this oil helps balance the nervous system.
Remember, it is OK if this is NOT the most wonderful time of the year. You are not alone and there are proactive steps to take to help this be a more uplifting time.
Health and Blessings,
Kimberly Anderson, ND
Randy Lee, ND, Owner, The Health Patch, 1024 S. Douglas Blvd, MWC 73130, phone/fax: 736-1030, e-mail: [email protected]. See our blogs and podcasts at www.TheHealthPatch.com. Our full staff are now offering affordable private consultations – call to schedule yours!