The holiday season is upon us and I’ve already encountered tons of blog posts about the holidays and depression. How to survive them. How to stat connected to others. How to have fun. How to set boundaries. How to reduce depression and anxiety. Clients are coming into my Davie therapy office asking for coping skills. The list goes on and on and I’ve personally written these types of posts. Recently, I was inspired to write this post about why watching Elf (plus bonus features) is good for your mental health. Seeing pictures of Buddy the Elf instantly puts a smile on my face. There is no surprise that showings of Elf help kick off the holiday season. This is one of my favorite Christmas movies and not just for the comedic relief of Will Ferrell. There is a message in the movie and they are outlined below!
1. Buddy teaches unconditional love
Buddy loves his father with all of his heart, even when his father did not live up to expectations. He wanted to hang out with his brother, even when his brother shunned him. He made friends with the mail room people when sent down there. He taught us that we can love unconditionally, even when we don’t get it back or the circumstances aren’t ideal.
2. Buddy teaches us to make the best out of every situation
Buddy was handed a raw deal. He was the only human among elves and had to make due. He learned to acclimate the best he could and to be resourceful. When he was expected to dress like a human and go to work, he did. When he was asked to work in the mail room, he did so with a smile on. Buddy was able to show us how to persevere in life.
3. Buddy teaches us that we should celebrate EVERYTHING!
Everything was an adventure to Buddy. He made going to New York by himself a magical trip. He made walking around New York City alone look easy. He got a job and then was able to decorate the entire place and make it feel comfortable to him. He loved to sing and have fun! What if we all spent more time in life singing and celebrating every moment?
What can you do this holiday season to embrace the celebration and love it has to offer? How can you let go of resentment that might be getting in your way of loving unconditionally? How many times do you plan on watching Elf this year?
Happy Holidays to all of my readers.
Amanda Patterson, LMHC, CAP , Mental Health Counselor of the Year by the Florida Mental Health Counseling Association, decided to become a therapist while attending Nova Southeastern University. She saw the need to help people achieve the life they wanted to live, while creating a life of her own. She completed her master’s in Mental Health Counseling and started a career in the juvenile justice arena. Amanda has been a therapist for ten years and has a private practice in Wellington, Florida, specializing in depression, anxiety, relationship issues, and substance abuse in teenagers and young adults. Amanda is a believer in holistic treatment and she practices veganism, meditation and yoga in her life. Find out more about her practice here.