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Wellness Coach Amanda Webster’s Tips to Happiness Boost During Holidays

By Charlene Bazarian

It’s the most wonderful time of the year… unless it’s not.  If you are already feeling overwhelmed, the notion that you should be jolly, or what can best be described as a sense of “forced merriment,” can result in intensifying feelings of anxiety or melancholy.  Taking steps to protect your mental well-being, particularly in this post-COVID era, has never been more necessary.  If you are feeling less than joyful this holiday season, know that you are not alone and there are practical and effective strategies that can help.  

I asked Amanda Webster, Mind-Body Wellness Coach, suicide survivor, and founder of Happiness Boost, to share some insights on navigating the mental health trials and burnout that so many people struggle with during the holidays.

 What are some proactive steps people can take to help combat the holiday blues?

 Developing coping strategies before the holidays kick in can be extremely helpful. When you have coping mechanisms that are positive and adaptive, you can stave off burnout. Some specific strategies that can help prevent feeling overwhelmed that I recommend are:

Are there warning signs to be aware of that could indicate seasonal depression may be striking?

Recognize the early signs of burnout such as fatigue, dissatisfaction with the season, sleep disturbances, or escapism by means of overindulging in alcohol or overeating. These can all signal that it may be time to take action prior to developing more advanced stages of physical and emotional illness, such as chronic exhaustion, depression, anxiety, and anger.

What can you do if visions of sugarplums aren’t dancing in your head and you feel a bit disconnected from all the holiday cheer?

Try to reframe the holidays by banishing your preconceived notions of what the holidays should look like.  The holidays don’t necessarily need to be the most important or meaningful time of year. You, ultimately, have control over what is significant to you and what traditions you care to partake in.

What do you suggest for those who find themselves physically exhausted and emotionally depleted?

Making sure that you are caring for your adrenals, and balancing relaxing activities with physical ones, can help you recover from mental burnout.  It can also be extremely helpful to focus on what foods are best to avoid and which ones can be beneficial.

It may feel like everyone else is merry and bright during the holidays but, unfortunately, seasonal blues are extremely common. Try not to judge the inside of your life against the outside of everyone else’s.  Taking some steps to reduce mental stress and anxiety, particularly at this time of year, is truly a gift that you can give yourself. 

To learn more about Amanda Webster and her program, which allows others to take the same steps she did to go from being suicidal and struggling with addiction, to being decertified as having a Serious Mental Illness (SMI) and thriving, you can check out her website at She also shares her mental health journey and inspires others on her YouTube channel ( and on Instagram @amandawebsterhealth  

 If you are struggling and in crisis, there is help available. Contact a suicide prevention hotline here.

About the authorCharlene Bazarian is a fitness and weight loss success story after losing 100 pounds. She mixes her no-nonsense style of fitness advice with humor on her blog at and on Facebook at FBJ Fit.

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