Christmas is often associated with feelings of joy, cheer, and togetherness. However, for many people, the holiday season can be a difficult and stressful time. If you know someone who is struggling during this time of year, it’s important to offer them support and understanding.
One way to do this is by applying positive psychology theory. Positive psychology is a branch of psychology that focuses on the study of happiness and well-being. It emphasises the importance of positive emotions, personal strengths, and social connections in promoting overall well-being.
Here are some ways that you can use positive psychology theory to support someone who is finding Christmas difficult:
- Validate their feelings: Christmas can be a difficult time for many reasons. It may be a reminder of lost loved ones, a trigger for financial stress, or a source of social isolation. Whatever the reason, it’s important to validate the person’s feelings and let them know that it’s okay to not feel happy and festive all the time.
- Encourage them to focus on the present moment: One of the key principles of positive psychology is mindfulness, or the practice of being fully present in the moment. Encourage the person to focus on the present moment and let go of any worries or concerns about the past or future. This can help them to feel more grounded and less overwhelmed.
- Help them to identify and cultivate their strengths: Another important aspect of positive psychology is the idea of using our personal strengths to improve our well-being. Encourage the person to think about what they are good at and what brings them joy. Help them to find opportunities to use their strengths and talents, whether it’s through volunteering, creative pursuits, or other activities.
- Connect them with others: Social connections are an important source of support and happiness. If the person is feeling isolated, help them to connect with others who may be going through a similar experience. This could be through support groups, online communities, or in-person activities.
Overall, the holiday season can be a difficult time for many people. By using positive psychology theory, you can offer support and understanding to someone who is struggling. By validating their feelings, encouraging them to focus on the present moment, helping them to identify and cultivate their strengths, and connecting them with others, you can help them to find happiness and well-being during this festive time of year.