Brightening the Holiday Blues

The holidays can be a joyous time for some and a challenging time for others. This time of year can heighten feelings of sadness or loneliness, bring up difficult emotions, be a tough reminder of the loss of a loved one, or bring up stress about financial difficulties.

What are some things you can do to lift your spirits now (or any time of the year)?

We asked our benefits counselors for their recommendations:

  1. Volunteer. One of the best ways to feel more positive is to help other people—it even improves your health and well-being. Consider volunteering at your local ILC (like CIDNY!), in your neighborhood, or through an organization that you’re involved in.
  2. Create new memories or revisit old ones. If distance or family dynamics mean that you’re on your own during the holidays, try creating your own rituals for the holidays. Enjoy free activities like checking out holiday lights, window decorations, or a Christmas tree lighting. Choose a movie to be your annual holiday viewing, make your favorite meal, listen to music that makes you happy, or spend time with your pet.
  3. Enjoy new friends. Celebrate with your chosen family, whether they are new friends, neighbors in your apartment building, or residents in your nursing or assisted living facility.
  4. Check in on others. If you know someone who’s alone or homebound during the holidays, call or visit them. Call an old friend and connect.
  5. Brainstorm other strategies. Your benefits counselor can help you think of other strategies to cope with holiday stress. Reach out to us if you need support.
  6. Try meditating. You might clear your mind and ease your worries by meditating. Insight Timer is a fantastic, free app with guided meditations and music to start your practice. Try to maintain a healthy self-care routine during the holidays, whether through meditation, exercise, or pacing yourself.

If you need coping or mental health support, contact NYC Well.



The information, including but not limited to, text, graphics, images and other material contained on this website are for informational purposes only. The purpose of this website is to promote broad consumer understanding and knowledge of various health topics. It is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health care provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition or treatment and before undertaking a new health care regimen, and never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website.