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4 Small Towns That Should Be Visited Every Christmas

4 Small Towns That Should Be Visited Every Christmas

Christmas is a perfect ending to a year filled with fun and adventures. For many, Christmas is the time to be with loved ones, family, and friends.

Some say it’s also the perfect time to take a vacation with your loved ones. While most assume that summer is the perfect time for a beautiful vacation, some may not have the time or the opportunity, or they may have overlooked the beautiful season of winter.

This amazing season deserves both celebration and praise especially since it is a part of one of the most commonly celebrated festivities all around the world. So to make your Christmas special; here a few small towns you can visit and have a memorable year end celebration.


    1. North Pole, Alaska

    By the name of the place, you can be certain that it’s definitely going to be a Christmas wonderland. With a whole year of Christmas decorations provided by nature and celebrated by locals, it’s definitely the place to be during a winter season.

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    Take your family members to visit Santa in the exclusive Santa’s factory, or take in the various igloos surrounding the cold region. However, the trademark of Alaska surpasses beyond Santa and igloos. It’s the home to the world’s most spectacular event by nature, the Aurora Borealis.

    Witnessing the Northern Lights in its fine colors could be a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. Therefore, taking your family there during this festive season could be the best gift you can give, taking them away from materialistic possessions and placing true value on family connections and love.

      2. Fusen, Germany

      Fusen is located in the Bavarian part of Germany. Although a huge united land, Germany varies in culture and tradition according to their regions; sometimes even their dialects of German vary, making it rather distinctive. Fusen is often a small town that many fail to notice while traveling through Germany.

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      However, they’re still considered a magical place for Christmas celebrations. This town has been standing strong for about 700 years, and is located at the borders of Austria, at the foot of the Austrian Alps. It has beautiful, scenic nature, as well as historic and untouched monuments proved to be Bavaria’s greatest treasure.

      Their Christmas market, which encompasses both Austrian and German traditions, is definitely a feast for the eyes. So taking your loved ones there to celebrate Christmas could be an opportunity for you to indulge in history, and experience the perfect Christmas in Europe.

      Plus, if you happen to be there, don’t forget to check out the lake formations at the edge of the Alps, as it inspired one of the greatest productions in the artistic world, Tchaikovsky’s Swan Lake. I guarantee it’s a place you would want to visit over and over again.

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        3. Osmington, Dorset, UK

        Osmington in Dorset, United Kingdom, is a small parish town. Unlike other towns, Osmington offers an authentic experience of being in the middle ages. Being a small town with tons of history and stories, it definitely is a town you would want to spend your time in.

        Since social media plays a part in the way we travel, and we tend to follow the best trends and Instagram tags, heading to Osmington would be a way to put yourself in an unique spot light .

        The Osmington White Horse is a carving of King George III riding a horse, made in 1800. This symbolizes the vast knowledge and influence the British monarchy has had in this tiny town. If you and your family are looking for a traditional way to enjoy Christmas, Osmington would be a perfect place to stay, away from all the exterior influences of technology. Immerse yourself in nothing but calm and adventure.

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          4. Kyoto, Japan

          Japan is a land filled with culture and worldly influence. From the outside world, Japanese culture seems as delicate and pristine as the Sakura flowers. Kyoto is one of the best places to enjoy winter in Japan, and offers more than an experience –  it offers a lifestyle.

          From the Onsen Hot Spa, enjoy soaking away in the warm natural waters, releasing all your stress and worries. Most Japanese people prefer “Sentos,” which is a public bath space where you would be able to mingle with the locals. The Public Baths are usually separated for men and women, so you needn’t worry of offending anyone by walking into a unisex bathhouse.

          While their bathing culture is something unique, Japan also has one of the most exquisite food cultures; “Nabo,” or in our terms, “hot pot,” is one of the famous dishes during this winter season. A pot of “Nabo” can keep you warm throughout the day; it’s usually enjoyed in a group of people with friends and family. So avoid all the junk food and unhealthy snacks and binge on this instead.

          Finally, Kyoto is a holy ground for many Japanese people. With a bridge that is claimed to be a direct route to heaven, and various temples that showcase Japan’s beauty and simplicity, you’ll find yourself captivated in a daze of being in a wonderland. So take your time to explore, eat, and breathe Japanese if you find yourself in Kyoto.

          Christmas is an amazing festival to be celebrated with friends and family; so next year, take the opportunity to do something unique and beautiful to make it one of your most memorable celebrations.

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          Last Updated on June 24, 2019

          Why Social Media Might Be Causing Depression

          Why Social Media Might Be Causing Depression

          A study [1] published in Depression and Anxiety found that social media users are more likely to be depressed. This was just one of the huge number of studies linking social media and depression[2] . But why exactly do platforms like Facebook and Instagram make people so unhappy? Well, we don’t know yet for sure, but there are some explanations.

          Social Media Could Lead to Depression

          Depression is a serious medical condition that affects how you think, feel, and behave. Social media may lead to depression in predisposed individuals or make existing symptoms of depression[3] worse explains[4] the study above’s senior author Dr. Brian Primack. So, the problem may not be in social media per se, but how we use it.

          Signs You’re Suffering From “Social Media Depression”

          If you feel like social media is having a negative impact on your mood, then you may be suffering from “social media depression.” Look for symptoms like:

          • low self-esteem,

          • negative self-talk,

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          • a low mood,

          • irritability,

          • a lack of interest in activities once enjoyed,

          • and social withdrawal.

          If you’ve had these symptoms for more than two weeks and if this is how you feel most of the time, then you are likely depressed. Although “social media depression “is not a term recognized in the medical setting, social media depression seems to be a real phenomenon affecting around 50% of social media users. As explained in a review study[5] published in Cyberpsychology, Behavior, and Social Networking, if a person has a certain predisposition to depression and other mental disorders, social media use may only worsen their mental health.

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          Social Media Could Crush Self-Esteem

          We know that social media and depression are in some way linked, but why is this so? Well, according to Igor Pantic, MD, Ph.D.[6], social media use skews your perception about other people’s lives and traits. To explain this further, most people like to portray an idealized image of their lives, personal traits, and appearance on sites like Facebook and Instagram. If you confuse this idealized image with reality, you may be under the false impression that everyone is better than you which can crush your self-esteem and lead to depression. This is especially true for teens and young adults who are more likely to compare themselves to others. If you already suffer from low self-esteem, the illusion that everyone has it better off than you will just make you feel worse.

          Causing Social Isolation and Other Negative Emotions

          Another commonly cited reason for the negative impact of social media on mental health is its link with social isolation. Depressed people are more likely to isolate themselves socially and chose only to interact indirectly through social media platforms. But communication online tends to be superficial and is lacking when compared to real-life interaction explains Panic. What this means is not that social media leads to isolation but the other way around, possibly explaining why we find so many depressed persons on these sites.

          Lastly, social media use may generate negative emotions in you like envy, jealousy, dislike, loneliness, and many others and this may worsen your depressive symptoms.

          Why We Need to Take This Seriously

          Both depression and social media use are on the rise according to epidemiological studies. Since each one has an impact on the other, we have to start thinking of healthier ways to use social media. Teens and young adults are especially vulnerable to the negative impact of social media on mental health.

          Advice on Social Media Use

          Although these findings did not provide any cause-effect explanation regarding Facebook and depression[7], they still do prove that social media use may not be a good way to handle depression. For this reason, the leading authors of these studies gave some suggestions as to how clinicians and people can make use of such findings.

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          One suggestion is that clinicians should ask patients about their social media habits. Then they can advise them on how to change their outlook on social media use or even suggest limiting their time spent on social media.

          Some social media users may also exhibit addictive behavior; they may spend too much time due to compulsive urges. Any compulsive behavior is bound to lead to feelings of guilt which can worsen depressive symptoms.

          Having Unhealthy Relationship with Social Media

          If you feel like your relationship with social media is unhealthy, then consider the advice on healthy social media use provided by psychology experts from Links Psychology[8]:

          Avoid negative social comparison – always keep in mind that how people portray themselves and their lives on social media is not a realistic picture, but rather an idealized one. Also, avoid comparing yourself to others because this behavior can lead to negative self-talk.

          Remember that social media is not a replacement for real life – Social media is great for staying in touch and having fun, but it should never replace real-world interactions.

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          Avoid releasing personal information – For your safety and privacy, make sure to be careful with what you post online.

          Report users who bully and harass you – It’s easy to be a bully in the anonymous and distant world of social media. Don’t take such offense personally and report those who abuse social media to harass others.

          The bits of advice listed above can help you establish a healthy relationship with social media. Always keep these things in mind to avoid losing an objective perspective of what social media is and how it is different from real life. If you are currently suffering from depression, talk to your doctor about what is bothering you so that you can get the treatment you need to get better. Tell your doctor about your social media use and see if they could give you some advice on this topic.

          Reference

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