Mental Health and the Holidays
Whether you’re feeling symptoms of depression, guilt, or regret, your feelings are valid. The best thing you can do is treat your mental health like you would your physical health. If you aren’t feeling mentally healthy, it’s time to address it and try some things to help yourself feel better.
It’s easy to overcommit during the holiday season. We place high expectations on these weeks of the year and with that, we expect a lot of ourselves. If you’re feeling overwhelmed, learn to say “no.” If you’re having social anxiety, turn down that extra party. If the thought of trying to bake a dozen pies for a bake sale almost throws you over the edge, just say “no.” People will understand.
Don’t Over Indulge
Avoid Drugs and Alcohol
It can be challenging to go through the holidays on a budget. While you may be spending a little more than you usually would during this time of year, make sure you aren’t overextending your wallet. This will only make it so you start the New Year with more anxiety and stress than you have now.
If you find it difficult to keep from overindulging, keep a few hobbies or things to do on hand. Whatever it is – crafting, reading, exercising, etc. – having a plan for when you’re having the urge to overindulge will make it easier to resist in the moment.
Mindfulness has quickly risen to be a favorite tool among mental health professionals. There are many ways to practice mindfulness. Do what works for you, whether that’s a guided meditation, journaling, or something else. You can also check out the Mindfulness Toolkit from the University of Southern California to get started.
Stay in Therapy
If you’re already in therapy, the holidays aren’t the time to quit. Yes, the holidays can be busy and you may feel like you don’t have enough hours in the day. Prioritize your therapy. It will help you long-term to say no to another obligation and focus on your mental health with your therapist.