**MENTAL HEALTH TIPS and ADVICE TO KEEP YOUR EMOTIONS IN CHECK THROUGH THE HOLIDAY’S **
By Cyler H.
The holidays are upon us, and even though this time of the year can be filled with the greatest of joys, it can also be a time that inevitably hurts your health. Along with extra time spent with loved ones, holiday feasts, and vacation, the holiday season can bring up some unwanted emotions. Holidays filled with entertaining, shopping, and social gatherings; stress and depression can be easily triggered.
But the holidays don’t have to get the better of you. In fact, there are practical ways to keep in touch with your mental health and control the stress of this busy time. Here are some tips to help you check in with your mental state and hopefully help you enjoy this time of the year once more.
Think on Your Feelings
Sadness can happen at any time of the year, but during the holidays the feelings of sadness and grief can become exponentially heightened. If you’ve recently lost a loved one or simply can’t be with family and friends during this time, know that these painful feelings are normal. It’s perfectly healthy to think about these feelings, giving yourself a moment to express them however you need. Don’t try and force yourself to be joyful just because it’s expected.
Stay Consistent With Healthy Habits
During the holidays, it can be easy to fall away from the healthy habits you’ve worked hard to keep. It’s okay to indulge in holiday activities and festivities, but sometimes overindulgence can lead to unnecessary guilt and added stress. When you feel like your enjoyment of something is becoming a loss of control, recognize that these feelings and examine your habits and surroundings.
Remember that you’ve changed those habits before for a good reason, and keeping consistent with them is the only fair thing to do for yourself. Feel like you’re struggling to stay consistent with your healthy habits?
Remember to sleep.
Keeping up with a healthy sleeping schedule can be a challenge, but remind yourself that plenty of sleep is necessary to settle your mind and mentally recharge for the next day. If you’re losing sleep, assess why and try to make sleep a priority in the future.
Eat balanced meals.
This time of the year is filled with sweet treats, drinks, and heavy foods. Just because you’re full of a heavy meal doesn’t mean your consuming healthy meals. Try your best to balance typical holiday treats with traditionally healthy food.
Seek Out the Help of a Professional
Despite doing as much as you possibly can to relieve yourself of negative emotions and patterns, your feelings of depression, anxiety? Even anger or old resentments can still seep into your days. If you’re unable to sleep, are feeling hopeless, and unable to face family and friends, it may be time to seek professional help.
Don’t wait to seek help until after the holidays when the stress has lessened. There is no better time than now to get the most out of your time with a medical professional.
Speak to someone, be heard, and be ready to make important life changes. There is no shame in doing so and don’t let stigma get in the of reaching out for professional help so you can have the joyous holiday season you deserve . . .