The Pressure to Not Be Yourself (Conforming to Others Holiday Expectations)

Feeling the pressure to fit in with what one’s friends or family are doing this holiday season can be stressful! After all, it seems easier to “give in” [and conform] than to “rock the boat” and go against others’ expectations.

What may have started out as tradition may begin to feel like an overwhelming obligation. It might begin to feel as though others have control of your schedule and choices. I “have” to visit this person, then I “have” to visit that person. I “have” to make this, then I “have” to make that. I have to buy…I have to go…I have to do… !!

Rituals and Traditions in Celebration

December is a month of celebration. It is also a month full of rituals and traditions.

Rituals differ from traditions in that rituals involve a series of actions that are repeated. A tradition is similar in that beliefs or behaviors are passed down, with cultural significance tied to the past; however, they do not need to be performed in a prescribed order.

Thankfulness / Gratitude

The Oxford Dictionary defines the word grateful as “showing an appreciation of kindness.” Being grateful is an action whereas being thankful is a feeling. While the holidays have looked different this year, especially compared to past years, I reflect on thankfulness and choose to practice gratitude.

Suicide Survivor Loss

The holidays tend to be a difficult time for those who have lost a loved one. This is especially true for family and friends who have died by suicide. Within the last year, I have been able to come alongside friends and family who have lost loved ones by suicide. As we celebrate the holiday season, suicide survivors are reminded of the “empty chair” at the table. The Saturday before Thanksgiving has been designated as International Survivors of Suicide Loss Day. It is a day where family and friends of those who have died by suicide can come together for support and healing.

CARE-ing for a Friend/ Family Member with Suicidal Thoughts

The National Suicide Prevention Website lists a number of warning signs that can be helpful in recognizing if one is at risk for suicide. Knowing the warning signs, especially if behaviors are new or have increased as well as signs that seem related to a painful event, loss, or change are tell-tale signs.

Holiday Self Care

Who can relate to at least one of the following?
Stressing out over holiday plans to make everyone “happy”
Making a decision that you don’t agree with in order to “keep the peace”
Running all over the place, driving or traveling long distances when you would rather stay put
Saying “yes” to plans when you’d rather say “no”
Pushing yourself beyond your limits because it is something you “should” be doing
Feeling obligated to do the same yearly activity/ outing that you’ve always done because “others are counting on it”

International Stress Awareness

I find it ironic that National Stress Awareness Day falls on the first Wednesday in November, or the day after Election Day. While the United States is known as a stressed out nation, it was ranked number seven according to the 2018 Gallup survey which found that “more Americans were stressed, angry and worried last year than they have been at most points during the past decade.”

Depression in Youth with T1D

Depression is very common in youth who have T1D, if you are a parent who is concerned that your child may be having a difficult time, there is treatment and resources available.

Depression in Attorneys

Depression can happen when work and life become overwhelming. If you are feeling some of the physical symptoms of depression treatment is available.