Happy and Healthy Holidays

Firefighter Health First-Aid
Page Last Modified / Reviewed: 
Nov 2020

This is part of the "Taking Care of Our Own" series.

Holidays can be exciting for some of us and for others they can bring anxiety and depression. Being laid off for the winter season, compounded with the holidays, can leave some feeling anxious or depressed. Despite prevailing holiday excitement, a person can find themselves feeling alone. Full-time firefighters may not get any break from wildfires, which brings additional challenges during holiday seasons.

Here are a few simple ideas to help maneuver the holiday season:

  • If eating and drinking too much are an issue for you, then skip the holiday parties or only stay for a short time.
  • Don’t be alone if you do not want to be. If you find yourself feeling lonely without friends or family, there are other people who could use your company. Volunteer or join groups with people that have similar interests. Many websites and apps offer information about various opportunities to serve or interact with others.
  • Go easy on your wallet. This time of the year can get expensive and stressful due to various parties, gift-giving, and travel. Offer to have someone over for dinner instead of going out to eat. Set spending limits for gifts, and use mail and technology to stay in touch with remote family and friends.
  • Say no if you feel overwhelmed. You are not obligated to wear yourself out attending every holiday function.
  • Reach out to your coworkers and seasonal employees. A simple effort to touch base can go a long way to helping someone who feels isolated and depressed.
  • If someone you know needs help or you are concerned they are suicidal, contact 911, call the Suicide Hotline (1-800-273-8255), or text CONNECT to the Crisis Text Line at 741741 in the United States.

Cheers to being healthy and happy through the winter season!   Happy Holidays!


Additional Resources

Incident Management Situation Report (IMSR)
Incident Response Pocket Guide (IRPG), PMS 461
NWCG Standards for Helicopter Operations, PMS 510
RT-130, Wildland Fire Safety Training Annual Refresher (WFSTAR)
Interagency Standards for Fire and Fire Aviation Operations (Red Book)
Wildland Fire Lessons Learned Center

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