Although the holiday season may be a time of togetherness and happiness, the holidays can be a stressful time for those struggling with their mental health. In fact, for many people, the holidays can bring on distressing emotions and worsen existing depression and anxiety symptoms. It can be especially difficult for those struggling with eating disorders as there are so many food-centric festivities this time of year.
As we enter the holiday season, feelings of joy and gratitude fill the air, what better time than now to start positive traditions that foster your emotional health?
Plan Non-Food Related Activities
Although the holiday season is often centered around large feasts and seasonal goodies, there are plenty of ways to celebrate without focusing on the food. Plan activities that shift the focus back to the reason for the season in the first place. Maybe that means you plan a family game night, take a nature walk together, or even go around talking about things you’re all grateful for.
Prepare Coping Techniques for Known Triggers
While you may be aware of what causes you to feel overwhelmed, you can’t always avoid them. Take a look at your plans and outline events that may be a little more intense for you and keep your go-to coping mechanisms ready.
Whether you need to excuse yourself to the restroom to practice deep-breathing exercises or to take a walk around the block to clear your head, find your own way to help you feel relaxed.
Set Aside Some “Me” Time
Between dinners, parties, and social gatherings, the holidays are often focused on surrounding yourself with friends and family—but there is also value in having time to yourself.
Some of the ways you can work “me” time into your schedule include:
Taking a nature walk
Listening to music
Reading or listening to your favorite book
Taking a hot shower or bath
Meditating or practicing yoga
Making yourself a cup of coffee or tea
Be Patient With Yourself
If you find yourself struggling throughout the holiday season, take a moment to remind yourself how far you’ve come. Remind yourself that you are strong, courageous, and doing a great job. Be kind and forgiving with yourself if you take a few trips on your journey to recovery and wellness.
Mental Health Resources Available at Tapestry
At Tapestry, our treatment programs are designed to provide our clients with individualized care while acknowledging their unique life experiences. Our staff members are also dedicated to understanding and treating our clients as whole people.
Whether you have questions about mental health or how to support a loved one struggling with their mental health, we are here for you. Contact us today by filling out a confidential form or give us a call at (828) 490-4032.