DOES SEEING RED & GREEN MAKE YOU BLUE?

holiday depressionReady or not, the holidays are approaching! It’s likely you are seeing signs of the season. Zealous shopping destinations have already decked the boughs and wrapped the aisles in ribbon and garland.

While many look forward to the holidays, for others, the season can trigger feelings like depression, loneliness and other deep emotions. These types of feelings can be especially challenging for those who are in substance abuse treatment or recovery.

Nick Turner, Clinical Supervisor at Gateway Foundation Alcohol & Drug Treatment in Chicago River North offers some helpful reminders to help improve your mindfulness and your outlook:

Think about what you can do to have a holiday you will appreciate rather than getting caught up in thoughts of what could happen during the holidays.

  • Carry your values with you, like the love you have for your family and friends, and remind yourself how you want to behave around them.
  • Be mindful and aware instead of ruminating about how unpleasant the holiday event can be.
  • Practice putting less focus on others and more attention towards what you can control, such as your thoughts, attitude and actions.
  • Think ahead to when you’re driving home from the gathering, how do you want to feel about your actions and behavior towards your loved ones?
  • Exercise the tools you favor for reducing anxiety and depression, such as positive self-talk, journaling, exercise and meditation.
  • Attend recovery support meetings and alumni events to share your feelings with others and stay grounded in your values.

For more information about recovery support and upcoming alumni gatherings, please visit RecoveryGateway.org/Alumni.

About Gateway Foundation Alcohol & Drug Treatment Centers
Every year Gateway Foundation Alcohol & Drug Treatment helps thousands of adults and teens get their life back on track and gives renewed hope to those who care about them. With 50 years of treatment experience, our specialists take the time to understand of the specific needs of each individual. We then develop a customized treatment plan with recommendations for the most appropriate care based on an individual's substance abuse and mental health history. As the largest provider of alcohol and drug abuse treatment in Illinois, Gateway has 11 treatment centers throughout the state. Gateway outpatient and residential substance abuse treatment programs are not one-size fits all, but unique treatment plans that give an individual the highest chance for a successful outcome. With insurance acceptance and a track record of success, Gateway Treatment Centers help thousands of individual’s successfully complete treatment each year, and find the hope they need to live again.

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