Holidays are wonderful, but are also a time full of stress, plans, social and internal pressures, and so on
Holidays can cause a toll on our mental health if we feel our boundaries are not respected, we have family arguments, or we just simply plan too much or put too much on our shoulders
Finances can become an issue, as can breaking our healthy routines, such as diet and exercise
It can be easy to feel lonely during this time as well, especially if we live far away from family and friends, do not have others to celebrate with, or have lost a loved one
What are some ways to stay mentally healthy during the holiday season?
Holidays are about giving, gratitude and care—but make sure you are doing this for yourself as well. Take time out of busy routines to give yourself gifts of space, time away from others, self-care, and the right to say no
Make sure to reinforce your boundaries with others—it is okay to say no if you have received too many invitations—or conversely, if you are just not up for hosting an event this year and need someone else to
Recognize and try to celebrate and accept personality differences—not fight against them. Maybe you and a particular family member do not see eye to eye. Using mindful acceptance to recognize this difference and not try to fight it can lead to far less stress in the long run
If you are feeling lonely and do not have others around to celebrate with, think about donating time to a local charity. You can help pass out candy for Halloween at a local trick or treat event, bring presents to those who can’t afford them, and so on. Look for opportunities to attend events at churches and other local organizations. If you are missing a loved one you have lost, do something special during the holidays to honor and remember that person
Reinforce your monetary boundaries throughout the holiday. It is okay to not buy as many gifts, not go to as many parties, and not bring as much food to get togethers. You will feel happier and more peaceful throughout the holiday season if you make a budget and stick to it.
Don’t let healthy habits suffer. If you exercise regularly, keep this up. If you are on a diet, think about giving yourself 1-2 “cheat days” throughout the whole season, as opposed to several days around each holiday. Buy Halloween candy that you do not like, and/or give away the rest of it to the last trick or treater