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Who's afraid of the big C?


Can you believe we're only 35 days away from Christmas? I don't know about you but I feel that I've only just gotten over Christmas 2017 and here we are again. Whilst Christmas is supposed to be a time for family, friends and recharging our batteries for many it's a time of anxiety, depression and sheer dread. Retailers are constantly trying to get us to spend money, TV channels are full of Christmas adverts (even Sir Elton is in on it this year) and all you can hear on the radio is Christmas music. Can we ever really escape the potential cost of the festive season?


Many therapists will agree that December is a naturally quieter time will less initial enquiries, clients wanting fewer sessions and services being closed until after the New Year. Many clients weigh up the financial costs and will often put therapy on the back foot in order to pay for the months festivities. However, for some clients Christmas disturbs their natural routines. Not everyone has someone to spend Christmas Day with, some relationships may have broken down or the idea of not having a weekly session makes them wonder about how they're going to cope.


For clients who struggle with this time of year it can feel overwhelming with a potential loss of a support network from counselling sessions and services. With this in mind I have come up with some top tips to stay emotionally healthy this Christmas:


  1. Only spend what you can afford. Is it really worth getting into debt or a financial struggle in the long run?

  2. Know your limits. We're all fallible human beings that are imperfect, don't waste time and energy trying to achieve perfection, it doesn't exist.

  3. Plan ahead. If you or your counsellor is going to be on holiday have an action plan in place before you take a break. Who is your support network going to be? How are you going to respond to any potential triggers?

  4. Make good use of your time. Spend valuable time with loved ones and let them know how much you value their support this festive season. For those who may feel like spending Christmas alone there are many charities that would grateful for your time and support for those that may also be facing tough challenges during this period.

  5. Don't be afraid to speak out. For clients that suffer from an illness or addiction Christmas can be a real trigger with the "eat, drink and be merry" mentality. Be aware when you're feeling overwhelmed and talk to someone you trust who can offer support. Alternatively there are charities open 365 days a year such as The Samaritans and Childline who can offer a listening ear for those in need.

  6. Recharge your batteries. Use this time to think about how you can make positive changes in your life; start something new or change something that isn't good for you. Reconnect with loved ones and take time to remember everything about you that's good about you.

However we all plan to spend our Christmas break it's a perfect time to reflect on the past year and forge new beginnings as we move into the next. If you want to look at making some positive changes in the near future to your emotional health what better present could you give yourself by seeking counselling? Check out the rest of my site and please get in touch if you think I could help either at laurenstreetcounselling@yahoo.com or 07801 331880.


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