Mental health is a serious subject that isn’t addressed enough. The holidays are here, and it’s easy to identify triggers that quickly set off individuals with mental health complications. This article discusses some vital mental health tips for the holidays.
Although many of us are excited about the holidays, over a third of adults in the United States report, they are stressed during the festive seasons. The Christmas season’s commitments can leave you feeling drained. This is true if you consider the trips you have to make to visit friends and family, attend work parties, shopping, gift-wrapping, or attend to your kids.
While that is unfortunate, we’re glad that there are specific steps you can take to ensure you enjoy this festive season.
Have a look at the following tips to see how you can better manage your mental health during the holidays.
1. Take it easy on yourself
The holidays are stressful enough without adding in mental illness. Thus, if you have been diagnosed with any kind of mental illness, then it is important that you take care of your physical needs first.
It is recommended that you take breaks from social media and other activities that make you anxious — like shopping. If you find yourself obsessing over gift ideas, try writing down all the things you want to buy instead of looking online.
2. Get some sleep
Sleep deprivation during the holidays will make everything worse. When you deprive yourself of sleep during the hectic holiday period, it affects your mood, memory, concentration, and even your immune system.
Get plenty of rest by going to bed earlier and waking up early. Also, avoid caffeine after noon; it may keep you awake later. Getting quality sleep daily will ensure that your are better focused, sharp and alert.
3. Be mindful
Being mindful of how you feel at each point during the holiday. It will help you steer away from the holiday blues. Be mindful of how much you spend during the holidays, so you can avoid financial stress.
Mindfulness helps reduce stress and improve overall well-being. In addition, try meditating or doing yoga before bedtime. Or, try deep breathing exercises while listening to soothing music.
4. Don’t forget self-care
The holidays can get pretty overwhelming, but when it does, take a step back and take some time for self-care. The holiday season is usually filled numerous gatherings and plans which can get exhausting. As such, you should set aside time for self care. Do things that help you relax and rejuvenated will serves as self care.
Drinking alcohol can be helpful when you’re stressed, but too much alcohol can worsen symptoms of anxiety and depression. Instead, opt for non-alcoholic drinks such as hot tea or water with lemon.
5. Seek professional help
If you’ve tried these steps and still aren’t feeling better, talk to your doctor about getting your anxiety or depression treatment.
6. Keep busy
When you’re depressed, being alone can exacerbate your sadness. But having fun with others can also boost your mood. So get involved in volunteer projects, join a book club, or go to a movie.
7. Avoid triggers
Some situations can trigger anxiety or depression. For example, if you tend to panic around crowds, avoid traveling during the holidays. And if you’re prone to overeating, stay away from large meals.
8. Don’t forget to enjoy the moment
During the December holidays, we often focus so much on our problems that we miss the joys of the season. So make sure you remember to appreciate the good times.
9. Talk about it
Talking about your feelings with someone who cares will help you work through your issues. If you don’t know anyone who understands your feelings, reach out to a friend or family member.
10. Show kindness
While it is important to show kindness to others everyday, the holidays are usually a period where kindness and generosity abounds. There are many mental and emotional benefits of showing kindness. Hence, you should try to be kind and generous always. Remember, you can’t control how others act during the holidays, you can choose to display kindness to others.
It’s good to remember the holidays are a time for sharing special time with friends and family. Also, remember that your feelings are valid, and you deserve all the love and care this season. However, adhering to these mental health tips for the holidays will ensure that you’re in the great shape mentally, throughout the holidays.