It's Okay Not to be Okay - Holiday Edition
By Navya Jain
The month of November ends in a few days, which means Christmas season is around the corner. Christmas is a festival that is looked forward to by most; it brings joy, happiness, and laughter into homes. However, some put on a mask of happiness and pretend that everything is alright, even though a storm is raging in our minds and trauma and grief are stabbing us like a knife. Social anxiety chokes us. So, we are here to tell you that it's okay not to be okay during the holidays.
You don't need to have a picture-perfect holiday like in the movies. The reality is that holidays are never really ‘perfect’. There are more people suffering alone or going through trauma than you can imagine. It’s okay to break down and cry when you need to. It's okay to seek professional help. It's okay to share your feelings instead of bottling them up. It’s okay to reach out to your friends or family to talk to them about what’s going on. It's okay to be alone, to not have your family or friends by your side during the season. It's okay to be sad.
Some vital things to remember are that you are not bothering therapists by asking for help. You are not bringing the joy of the room down by expressing how you feel. You don't have to wear a mask that hides your emotions.
You can do so many things to make yourself feel better!
For one, volunteer work. Reach out to animal shelters or an orphanage and offer to help. Nothing is better than helping someone else in need. It gives you the satisfaction nothing else will. You’ll feel at peace almost immediately.
Limit your social media usage. Social media is a hub where people post about the happy moments but the sad parts and disasters are usually kept hidden. Not only can social media affect you negatively, but also doing this gives you more time with family and friends.
Sharing your feelings isn’t going to make you magically feel better, but it will make you feel like you are heard, understood and not alone.
There are billions of ways to celebrate during the holidays. They don't have to be a white Christmas or a happy family Christmas like they show in the movies. There is no right or wrong way you celebrate this festival, it's completely up to you to decide how you want it to be.
Remember, a holiday is like every other day and it's up to you to choose whether you want this day to be fancy or not. You have the right to choose how you wish to experience the holiday in a way that fits your choice.
Give yourself a break, treat yourself. You deserve it.