Six mental health tips for a stress-free festive season
Take time for yourself
For many, the holidays are about spending time with family. However, Ferleyko points out that for some, family fights can be as accepted as festivities. “Personality conflicts between family members are a major source of stress and angst he says.
With all the events and activities over the holidays, we often forget to make time for ourselves.”Treating yourself to much needed ‘me time’ with self-care activities like practising mindfulness techniques, sneaking some extra shut-eye, getting off the grid and unplugging from technology, engaging in year-end reflection, or curling up with a book are good ways to relax and take care of mental health.
Perhaps one of the best ways to overcome stress during the holidays or any other time is to exercise regularly. Research shows that physical activity not boosts your fitness and energy levels but can also elevate your moods. In addition, exercise has been found to reduce anger, tension, fatigue and confusion.
Despite the many demands on your time, this is not the season to stop exercising. Indeed, when regular exercisers are inactive, they begin to feel depression and fatigued after just one week, according to a study from scientists at the Uniformed.
Make new traditions
While we often think of the holidays as the cheerful time of year, for many the end of December can be incredibly lonely. “For those who have lost loved ones or those after family nearby, there may be feelings of isolation, sadness and depression during the holidays,” says Ferleyko. Remember there’s no right or wrong way to celebrate.
Make the holidays meaningful to you by starting your own traditions and focusing on activities that bring you joy. Ideas include baking cookies, taking a stroll to see the Christmas lights in your neighbourhood, watching your favourite holiday movie or volunteering in the community.
this is the time of year that we should spend more time calculate our blessings, remembering what we have instead of worrying about what we don’t. Instead of “Keeping up with the Jones’s,” take a minute to appreciate the abundance of love, health, family, and friends.
Teach your kids about abundance. They should know that the most important treatment things in life are the things that make us the happiest: good relationships with family and friends, a partner we can share our life with and a full agenda of social activities that involve lots of smiling and laughing.
Set aside specific days for shopping, baking, calling friends and other activities. Plan your menus and then make your shopping list. That’ll help prevent last-minute clamber to buy forgotten ingredients. And make sure to line up help for celebration prep and cleanup.
Between gifts, food and travel costs, the holidays are an costly time of year. “Plan in advance, set a budget and stick to it, reduce your need to purchase presents through gift exchanges and remember that handmade gifts are always meaningful yet cost effective,” suggests Ferleyko.
Avoid the stress that comes with breaking the bank by spending smart this holiday season.
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