Merry-making, get-togethers, and good cheer – the holidays are the time when expectations are high for fun and family, and life feels busy, busy, busy!
But for those of us who struggle with stress, anxiety, and depression, the holidays can be a difficult time of the year because of the pressures and expectations.
Thankfully, there are ways to support your mental health this holiday season. From setting boundaries to self-care, these tips can help you cope with the holidays.
#1: Keep Expectations Realistic
We all have ideas about what the holidays should be (think roasting chestnuts on an open fire), but it’s important to remember that unrealistic expectations can lead to disappointment, which can lead to anxiety and depressive thoughts.
If you accept that a good holiday season doesn’t have to mean a perfect holiday, you can focus on trying to enjoy the moment.
#2: Make Time for Self Care
It’s easy to over-commit on get-togethers, dinners, and parties, but spreading yourself too thin can be overwhelming, exhausting, and cause burn out.
When you consciously manage your holiday plans, and make plenty of time for self care, you can ensure that you don’t feel overburdened, stressed, or anxious. Tell us how you practice self care in the comments below!
#3: Stick to a Spending Budget
Gifts, treats, transportation, party clothes, dinners out – the holidays can get very expensive. By making a holiday budget, you’re creating important financial boundaries that will help you prioritize what matters most: spending time with your loved ones.
#4: Support Your Physical Wellbeing Too
Over-indulgence is synonymous with the holidays – there always seems to be plenty of food and drink on-hand. However, it’s important to remember that certain kinds of food and drink can have a negative effect on your mood and your energy levels.
Mindfully enjoy the foods you love, eat your veggies, stay hydrated, and don’t forget to make time for exercise! Those endorphins can do wonders for your mental health!
#5: Let the Light Shine
Light from a full-spectrum lamp that is. For people who struggle with Seasonal Affective Disorder (or SAD), the extra light from a specialty lamp can help offset the long, dark winter by stimulating their circadian rhythm.
The holidays can be a busy time full of pressure, expectations, and overindulgence. For those who struggle with anxiety and depression, the season can be especially difficult. However, by looking out for our own wellbeing, practicing self-care, and maintaining a social balance, we can find the resilience to make it through the holidays.
How do you support your mental health during the holiday season?
Well.ca now offers preferred pricing for MindBeacon digital therapy, which provides CBT guided by a registered mental health professional. Because it’s digital, it’s there for you anytime, anywhere you want it. And it’s covered by most group health benefits plans. To learn more, check out MindBeacon at Well.ca services today.