10 Dec Holiday Time Mental Health
We all know the song; the holidays are the most wonderful time of the year. However, during the months of November and December, our workloads expand, our commitments to friends and to attend social events increase, and our bank accounts become as exhausted as we are. The most wonderful time of the year can quickly become the most taxing time of the year.
Feeling overwhelmed this holiday season? Here are some tips to relieve stress and ensure your holiday is a happy and healthy one:
Keep On Top Of Your Exercise Routine
Maintaining your usual exercise routine is especially important this time of year. The more you move the more endorphins your brain will release to keep you smiling and energized when you’re at your busiest. Looking for a new activity to try? Step onto a yoga mat and enjoy either an instructor-led class or simply throw on a YouTube video to demonstrate how to use breathing a stretching to relax your mind and body. Yoga helps to keep your thoughts on the present moment, which leads to less anxiety about an upcoming busy schedule.
Get Enough Sleep
Many studies have shown that poor sleeping habits can result in an increased risk of catching the latest bug and contribute to depression, weight gain and feeling unhealthy. The holidays bring with them a surge of stimuli in our day-to-day. Lights and music, higher volumes of road traffic, more foot traffic around town and busier calendars can all make it difficult to get a good night’s sleep.
To sleep more peacefully, limit the caffeinated beverages you’re consuming and try to only drink coffee before noon. Also turn off or silence your laptops, televisions and smartphones at least an hour before tucking yourself in. You’ll enter a deeper sleep and feel less restless when you wake in the morning.
Have you tried floating? Float tanks are excellent tools to increase sleep ability. Time in a sensory deprivation tank (other name for float tank) has been proven to help people suffering from insomnia to enter a deeper sleep for several nights after their float session. Floating is a great way to relax and add some “me time” to your agenda. A few sessions in a float tank or even a tank itself are something you could add to your own holiday wish list and the perfect gift to get a loved one who has been feeling low or sleeping poorly.
You Can Say NO
With the holidays comes invites to parties, dinners and catch-ups with friends. As soon as you say yes to one it can quickly snowball into attending all of them. Remember, you can say no! You don’t have to accept every invitation. Your friends will understand if you need the night to unwind. Sure, there are some obligations when it comes to family and business you may be required to attend, even though you don’t want to. But don’t push yourself out to everything you’re invited to. Don’t go to that cocktail night with your old high school mates you’re dreading. Instead use that time to focus on doing things you love with people you really care about or some time to unwind on your own
That leaves the most important way to keep yourself in high spirits during the holidays, keeping a strong focus on you and your own mental health. Remember to treat yourself kindly and leave time to do the things you love to do during the rest of the year. What makes you smile? Whether it’s curling up with a good book alone in bed, attending a Zumba class, cooking a delicious and healthy meal, or watching the latest movie release, make sure you set aside time as you need to feel at ease in your happy place during the holiday hustle and bustle.