Mental Health Tips for the Holiday Season

take care of yourself

‘Tis the season to be merry and bright. So why is it such a hard time for our mental health? According to the American Psychological Association, 38% of people say that their stress increased during the holiday season, which can lead to physical illness, depression, anxiety, and substance abuse. Those surveyed said this is due to financial pressure, lack of time, gift giving and family gatherings. The good news is that there are some good ways to reduce or prevent holiday stress and depression. Here are five simple tips to help you manage your mental health this year:

  1. Be realistic. The holiday season doesn’t have to be perfect or look just like last year. Traditions change as families change and grow. Remember to be flexible.
  2. Acknowledge your feelings. Just because it’s the holiday season, doesn’t mean you can force yourself to feel joyful. It’s normal to feel sadness especially if you’ve recently experienced loss or hardship. Take time to express your feelings if you’re feeling down.
  3. Set aside time for self-care. This is not a good time to abandon your healthy habits. Remember to find time for balanced meals, exercise, meditation and relaxation. Seek professional help if you need it. Cedar House is here to help if you find yourself struggling with substance abuse or need someone to talk to. Reach out if you’re feeling lonely or isolated.
  4. Plan ahead. It’s important to set aside time for shopping, baking, connecting with friends and other activities. Learn to recognize your holiday triggers, so you can work to avoid them. Plan your menus, make shopping lists and stick to a budget to reduce stressful days throughout the season.
  5. Remember what matters. It’s easy to get wrapped up in the hustle and bustle of the season. Limit your time on social media, and try to take some time to enjoy the moments with family and friends. Consider volunteering your time or doing something to help others That’s a great way to lift your spirits.

With a little planning, positive thinking, and these practical tips, you can minimize your stress and enjoy the holidays this year. The staff at Cedar House wishes you joy and peace this holiday season.

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