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Taking Care Of Your Mental Health This Christmas

I think it is really important to know and remember that you are not alone if you are struggling with your mental health around this time of year. Not everyone feels jolly during the festive holidays. Christmas can be really tough for a multitude of reasons, and the more we spread awareness around this the easier it may be to take the pressure off from being 'merry and bright'...



10 REASONS WHY YOU MIGHT BE STRUGGLING WITH YOUR MENTAL HEALTH THIS CHRISTMAS:


  1. You may be feeling worried, anxious, or overwhelmed about spending time with your family

  2. You may be reliving painful memories from previous trauma

  3. You may be, by choice or not, spending Christmas alone

  4. You may be feeling the pressure of financial strain

  5. You may be coping with grief and loss, spending Christmas without a loved one

  6. You may be pressured to justify to others your wants, needs, and boundaries throughout this time

  7. You may be without those who cannot make it home in time for Christmas

  8. You may be feeling pulled into celebrating when you are just not up for it this year because of your mental health

  9. You may have a difficult relationship with food and/or alcohol that others do not seem to understand

  10. You may feel pressured to have the perfect 'social media worthy' Christmas




Whatever it may be, if you can relate to any of the above, I hope you manage to find some solace in knowing you are not alone and that you manage to take care of yourself however you need.



SELF-CARE REMINDERS TO LOOK AFTER YOUR MENTAL HEALTH THROUGH CHRISTMAS:


  1. Remember that it's your day, too. If you find yourself feeling stressed and overwhelmed, take a break, even if it is just for five minutes. This can help you to regulate your emotions and find some peace. You cannot pour from an empty cup.

  2. If you have chosen to spend the day by yourself think about how you would like to spend it. You can treat it as a regular day or you can celebrate by going out for a nice walk, having your favourite treats, listening to some music, getting creative...whatever you choose. What would YOU like to do this Christmas?

  3. If you have chosen to spend the day with others and you decide you're not having a fun time, or if there is awkwardness, tension, or family upset... remember you can leave and go home whenever you want to. You get to say when enough is enough without feeling guilty.

  4. Remember that social media is not real. It is a glimpse into someone else's world and not the entire picture. No one's life is perfect. It does not make your day any less magical if it doesn't match other people's timelines. Gratitude for what we have quite often leads to happiness.

  5. It's okay if things mess up or don't go exactly to plan. So what if you burnt the turkey?

  6. You do not need to bankrupt yourself to enjoy Christmas. People will understand if you are struggling to afford it and want to skip giving presents this year. Everyone in the UK is experiencing the cost of living crisis right now, times are hard - whether you see other people struggling or not.





FINAL GENTLE REMINDER:


We never truly know what someone else is going through, so please remember to always be caring and considerate during the holidays (as well as all year round!). Offer support if and where you can, think before you speak, and respect other's boundaries. Kindness goes a long, long way - this goes not just for others but for yourselves, too!




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