Happy New Year! Or is it?

Marieta Dippenaar | Psychologist

New Year’s Depression is Real. Here’s What You Can Do About It

Many people struggle with holiday depression, and for many the feelings of apprehension, helplessness, and confusion peak on New Year’s Eve. Many people describe having that “Sunday Night” feeling.

Anyone with an existing mental health issue will be particularly vulnerable to the challenges of this big night with its major expectations – meaning that, instead of being exciting and joyous, the start to your new year could be stressful, sad, or lonely.

It’s okay to admit that New Year’s Eve isn’t your favourite holiday. Stress and anxiety are major components of the new year vibe. The stress associated with attending parties attend can become overwhelming. Maybe high expectations trigger bad feelings, especially if you can’t meet them. Finances cause also add to the year worries, particularly when coupled with the expectations of buying children’s school kits after having spent your entire salary already. Some people end up isolated over the new year, which can trigger depression. Loneliness and isolation are major triggers for depression and suicide.

Another issue that separates the New Year from any other part of the holiday season is the focus on reflection. Many people look over the past year and see a lot of disappointments. This is especially a problem if you tend to compare your own achievements with those of others.

If you are struggling, feeling down or very anxious, even panicky, this is a great opportunity to set goals for better mental health. Setting resolutions can bring a sense of hope to the coming year, but it can also be disappointing. Set goals that are reasonable and achievable. Don’t set yourself up for failure. Here are some good examples:

If the New Year (or any other part of the holiday season) is making you feel overwhelmed; angry and irritable, in what feels like an unreasonable way; confused; or trapped by anxiety and fear that may even lead to debilitating panic, then rather than setting New Year’s Resolutions, this is a great opportunity to seek professional assistance from the team of professionals at Evexia.

Evexia’s unique mental health programme runs right through the holidays and over the new year period, so our team is always here to provide direction and help you to navigate to calmer waters. Evexia is a place where you can rediscover your own map and reset your feeling compass.

You can contact the support teams at Evexia by emailing info@evexia.co.za or calling 012 348 8200.

Do you need help coping with the New Year?

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