How to Stay Mentally Fit This Holiday Season
By Jazmin Stearne
The holidays are here! ‘Tis the season for hot chocolate, presents, gatherings, and good food. However, the holidays can be a stressful time of year for many people. It is important to take care of yourself as you would any other time of the year. Also, the holiday season can bring up uncomfortable feelings for a lot of us. For instance, feelings of grief or loss can start to manifest, especially memories of past Christmases. What are some ways that you can care for your own needs this holiday season? I’ve listed 6 tips.
Stay safe by listening to Covid safety guidelines
I recommend keeping up-to-date on trusted resources, such as the CDC and World Health Organization (WHO). Don’t attend gatherings if you’re feeling sick. Practice social distancing (when possible), mask up if you need to, and wash your hands frequently. Use good judgment.
Put your mental health first, at all times
It is wise to be extra kind to yourself. If you suffer from depression or another mental health condition, recognize your symptoms and triggers. If you have a therapist and/or psychiatrist, keep up with all of your appointments. This is important even if you’re feeling well.
Pencil in plenty of (healthy!) activities that make you feel good. Go for a walk or get extra rest. I love adult coloring books, it is an activity that I enjoy, I think it’s relaxing. Be sure to schedule enough time to relax!
Accept the fact that feelings of loss or grief will come up
Allow yourself to “feel your feelings”. Sometimes there is little we can do to protect ourselves from having feelings of grief or sadness during this time of year.
Few families have the dynamics seen in holiday commercials and movies. This was true even before the pandemic. We all have our struggles, so don’t expect your holiday gatherings to stay stress-free. Be realistic.
Try not to overdo it
If you have gatherings to plan and shopping to do, try to manage your time wisely. If someone invites you to a party, you don’t have to attend if you don’t feel up to it. It is okay to simply say, “No”.
These are my tips for staying mentally healthy during the holidays. If you need emotional support this holiday season, give our office a call. 707-387-8479.
We are accepting in-person and virtual clients.
I hope your holiday season is filled with peace and joy!