It’s the season to be jolly…but is it really a ‘jolly’ season for everyone? During festive celebrations, Christmas songs, gifts and good wishes, we might still find a number of individuals who are hurting and lonely inside. If we stop and observe, amongst our colleagues, families and friends, we find those who are grieving a loss of a loved one, those unhappy in a relationship, those struggling financially. Christmas comes and goes for all of us including those battling cancer and chronic disease, mental health issues and familial problems.

How can we make Christmas happier for us and those around us:

  • Make time for those that matter to you and do not be enveloped by a whirlwind of activities just because ‘you have to’.
  • Find time for exercise and eat well. Physical activity can lower stress can help clear your mind. Enjoy a walk at the beach or in the country side.
  • Give to others. Enroll in a local volunteering program. Looking out for the needs of others can be beneficial for us too!
  • Open up to a friend, share your thoughts and feelings with someone you trust.
  • Start a journal or a blog – writing down your thoughts can make you feel much better!
  • Budget when gift spending to prevent too many extra bills in January!!


Anna Catania is a counsellor with Willingness. She has had a special interest in working with clients facing intimacy and sexual difficulties and runs a service for families going through cancer and chronic illness. She can be contacted on

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