Protect Your Mental Health This Festive Season

As relaxing as they’re meant to be, the holidays aren’t always easy. Unfortunately, during this time of year, there are a lot of demands that leave us drained, affecting our mental health. We’re already emotionally spent from the year and coupled with mingling with relatives (some of which we’d rather avoid), the festive period can can leave us mentally exhausted. This then increases the risk of short tempers and depression.

Thus, it may be time to add your mental health to your Christmas wish list by adopting the self-care tips below.

1. Plan ahead

From shopping to cleaning to cooking to decorating, there’s a lot happening during the holidays. Unfortunately, the seemingly endless list of chores and activities can leave us stressed and drained.

Holiday to-do list | Longevity LIVE

One sure way to avoid this is to stay organized and plan ahead. Making a list of tasks and spreading these tasks out over a series of days can boost productivity. It can also help to keep both your mind and festive period much more organized. Ensure that each day has a specific purpose be it shopping, decorating, cooking or donating clothes. In regards to shopping, always have a budget as this will prevent over-spending and an anxiety-ridden trip to the store.

2. Learn to say no

It’s normal to want to cater to everyone’s needs during the festive period but you are allowed to say no.

You don’t have to volunteer to do everything or promise to attend every party. By doing so, you may be putting your mental health at risk. No may not be a word we’re accustomed to hearing during Christmas, but if you’re unable to cope, don’t be afraid to say it.

You can also prioritize your mental healthy by setting boundaries. By doing so, you’ll be able to avoid situations or people that evoke sadness, stress and anxiety.

3. Stay active

Countless studies have highlighted the mental health benefits of physical activity and staying active during the festive period can help to reduce both the risk of stress and potential weight gain.

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You may not want to exercise as much during the holidays but even just thirty minutes can boost both your physical and mental health. Simply taking a walk or even stretching can help to relieve tension and ease any negative thoughts you may be harboring.

4. Nap time

Holidays can leave us exhausted so don’t be afraid to take a good rest, even if it’s during the day. Studies have linked lack of sleep with an increased rick of anxiety and depression thus you’re going to need to incorporate nap time into your holiday routine.

If you think you’ll have trouble falling asleep in house full of relatives, see which bedroom plants can help you fall asleep quicker here.

5. Unplug

Social media may help you stay in touch with relatives you don’t get to see during the holidays but it’s also quite exhausting.

The constant need to stay updated as well as the unconscious comparisons of other’s vacation getaways can evoke feelings of inadequacy and failure.  Going on a digital detox a few times a week will help you regain a better perspective on the more important things in life.

6. Stay grateful

It’s supposed to be the most wonderful time of the year, so it’s important to acknowledge that. Practicing positive thinking during a stressful time can transform your mindset.

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Express gratitude every day by focusing on the relatives that always bring a smile on your face. You can also list all the things you’re thankful for every morning. This positive mantra can help to keep away negative thoughts and emotions.

Want to Know More?

Winter blues are quite common during the holiday season. Known as Seasonal Affective Disorder or SAD, these winter blues are a form of depression. SAD has individuals dealing with depressive episodes during specific times of the year, including the festive season. Click here for more on this disorder.