Seasonal Stress Affected Disorder


S.S.A.D. – It’s a real thing people and it’s an epidemic. Think you may have it? See if you answer YES to more than 3 of these questions below. And please don’t stress over your answers.

  1. 1. When you hear Christmas music on the radio does your eye start to twitch and your stomach start to ache?

2. Do you spend hours price comparing, selecting and creating a family Christmas card? Do you berate yourself for the inability to just pick one and move on? Do you take so long that you end up debating whether you should just turn them into Happy New Year’s Cards?

3. Do you have fantasies about setting up death scenes for your creepy, smirking adorable elf?

4. Does putting up Christmas lights end up in your children learning new and colorful curse words while Daddy mumbles that he better go find Mommy a drink?

5. Do you feel an urge to slap people who insist on cheerily telling you how many days are left until Christmas?

6. Do you have OCD, where the constant layer of glitter and pine needles on your floors, clothes and walls makes you feel more upset than a Kardashian sister who can’t find her eyeliner?

7. Do you worry you might be developing early onset dementia when you know you hid presents you bought but struggle to remember where?

8. Do you overthink your gift selections? Obsess over whether the school teacher prefers Dunkin Donuts versus Starbucks? Do you try to ask your kids if they know? (By the way…they don’t and will look at you like you are crazy if you ask.)

9. Does planning a holiday meal menu sound about as appealing as cleaning your toilets?

10. Do you have nightmares about family members stealing your special sharp scissors, running out of scotch tape or wrestling with cheap wrapping paper?

11. Did Pottery Barn Kids send you a catalog with a $4,000 Star Wars Millennium Falcon Bed on the cover? Did your kid add it to their list to Santa? Are you tempted to write a note to Pottery Barn telling them they suck?

12. Are you already trying to clean stuff out of your home because you have no idea where all this new stuff that no one needs is going to go?

13. Do you buy extra candles, wine and gift cards because you have F.O.F.S.? (Fear of Forgetting Someone…usually the mailman/trashman/busdriver/coach/babysitter etc…

These Memes Are Nothing But The Truth From Instagram (13 Photos):

Bonus question –

*14 . Do you feel extra guilt over not being able to relax and enjoy the holiday season?

Don’t worry. You are not alone. At least 50% of the population feels this way. Probably more but they don’t want to admit it for fear of looking like a potential date for Mr. Grinch. It’s not that I don’t love Christmas.  I love the colors of Christmas, I love the warm and cozy fires, the sense of excitement, that look on a child’s face on Christmas Eve.  I even love that Johnson and Johnson commercial, you know the one that plays that extra slow and soothing version of Silent Night, while showing images of sweet little infants and babies sleeping peacefully.  What I don’t love is my own inability to overcome the anxiety that sits on my chest like an elephant as soon as I start to see trees for sale. It’s my own damn fault and I hate it. Why can’t we get out of our own way?

Our pets heads are falling off:

 Most women I know feel like a hot mess, and sometimes not even hot but just a mess. We are using saucer sized plates at an all-you-can-eat buffet, and we just keep piling it on.  You know how when you are on an airplane, they always instruct you to put on your own oxygen mask first before you go and try to help the others? So why are we putting the masks on the everyone else on the plane instead of ourselves? The reason they tell us this is because we will run out of our own oxygen and be useless to others. I can’t blame society or anyone else. I blame myself. I need to learn to let things go, to truly be present.  I’m convinced that even if I ran away to live in a tree house in Costa Rica I’d still find something to stress over, it would probably snakes. And I’d still continue to store too many coconuts in my treehouse, yet again taking on more than my small size treehouse can handle.
 The truth about tree houses...:
The thing is everyone’s plate is a different size. We can’t judge the size of anyone else’s plate. That’s just not fair. The key is in understanding the size and shape of our own plate. We need to prioritize what goes on that plate so as to make room for the most essential nutrients our particular body and mind needs. I also think it’s totally okay to get to a point in life and know what you like to do, what you don’t like to do and what do you want to learn how to do.  We are own worst enemy and put most of this pressure of expectations on ourselves. Nobody else really cares or is judging you because they are too busy worrying about themselves. It’s time to change the shape of our plates, reinvent the rules to fit our lifestyle and learn to adapt. Sometimes that may even mean using paper plates (literally and figuratively).
We all have those days.:
The past few years I skipped sending out Christmas cards. Of course I felt guilty but I also realized by saying no to one thing I was able to say yes to something else. Yes to driving around with the kids in the car looking at Christmas lights. Yes to a Friday night where we all stayed in and got in our pajamas and fell asleep in front of the fire. Yes to decorating on my pace, on my schedule, regardless of the date on the calendar.
One of the best Charles De Mar quotes from Better Off Dead:

*Insider Tip – Embrace the mistakes. 

Think about the stories you sit around and tell to your family and friends, the ones that make you belly ache with laughter. They are often the ones about things that didn’t go as we expected. Nobody laughs with the family reminiscing a perfectly placed table setting. It is so much more fun to remember the dinner where you let your young children set the table and all the silverware was backwards. I once had friends over last minute and served them apple slices and goldfish, and yes I’m totally serious. But it was all I had and we still ate it and had fun. My sister and her husband have a saying that I love. It’s sarcastic in that it is usually uttered when you are crammed into a car with screaming (kids)  and crying (adults), a carsick dog and a spilled bag of pretzels. The say “We’re making memories!!”, and boy are we ever.

It's far better to give.:


The same goes with clothes. Ease up on yourself. Keep it easy. Make sure you have a go to black dress on hand for unexpected outings. Not a dress girl? A black cashmere sweater or wrap, paired with black leggings or pants and fabulous and fun jewelry is a great fall back. Make sure you have at least one pair of fun, fabulous feel good shoes.  No need for perfection. Step away from the mirror and into your life, because the beauty lies in a life well lived.

Your basic black outfit brought to life with that statement it paired with a smaller statement necklace!:

 Thanks for reading!



All pics from Pinterest.


Published by suziegaffney

owner at Suzie Gaffney Styling

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