I realize that we are mid-way through the year end holidays, but wanted to put up a quick post to remind everyone to take care of their emotional health during the holidays.
Holidays are stressful for all of us. Even events that we find great joy in can still present stress. Whether you find yourself feeling anxious about the amount of money you did or didn’t spend on gifts, if you remembered to send cards to everyone that you “should” have, whether you are experiencing sadness due to a first holiday without a loved one or cannot be with family during the holidays; these all create strains on our mental health and deserve our attention to keep them from getting the best of us.
A few simple steps can go a long way:
1. Acknowledge The Stressor(s) – Identify ahead of time the issues of the holidays that may cause challenges and create strategies for lessening the impact. This may involve a number of things, such as establishing boundaries on the length of time extended family can visit, creating a budget to keep from over-spending and having to deal with post-holiday debt, or planning a time to get holiday tasks, such as sending out holiday cards, before you find yourself scrambling at the last minute.
2. Talk It Out – Discuss your feelings, concerns, struggles over the holidays with someone you trust. Sharing the burden with someone else can have a cathartic effect and keep a person from feeling like they are all alone with worries.
3. Compare Your Situation To Others – If you find yourself getting overwhelmed, take the time to consider what others may be experiencing during the holidays. Chances are, there are people in the world, possibly neighbors or friends, who have much harder situations than you. This can give one perspective and decrease stress.
4. Take Care Of Your Physical Health – Get enough sleep (even if that means catching an afternoon holiday nap), exercise, eat right, and don’t over-do-it on alcohol consumption. Physical and emotional health go hand-in-hand. You have to take care of both.
Hopefully these tips can be of some use now and for future holidays. For additional tips, here is an article put out by the U.S. Navy.