Happy December! 🌲 The holiday season for me has never been a perfect postcard or hallmark movie… Don’t get me wrong, I very much appreciate getting into the spirit of things, but it can be a bit overwhelming that we are constantly bombarded through movies, advertisements, and even each other’s highlights with sometimes unreasonable expectations that this time of year should look and feel a certain way. No matter where you stand on navigating the inevitable stress of the season, here are a few easy ways to protect your mental health this month 🤍
1. Manage your expectations: accept that things may not turn out exactly as planned. practice giving yourself and others grace + appreciate things for what they are.
2. Maintain routines: routines are the best for managing stress bc your body and mind knows what to expect, which mitigates stress. my routines are my favorite place to turn in times of heightened emotion to help calm and regulate my nervous system.
3. Set boundaries: be thoughtful about what YOU need to feel your best this season and communicate those needs proactively.
4. Shift your focus: turn off social media or unfollow/mute content that may be triggering. find new ways to fill your time other than social media scrolling.
5. Emphasize gratitude: I always preach practicing gratitude, esp when it comes to being a tool for improved mood! take time daily to count a few things you’re thankful for. volunteer or donate; it’s hard to feel down when you’re helping someone in need.
6. Choose healthy habits: avoid drugs, alcohol, too much sugar, or processed food – these can all worsen negative mood/emotion! take walks, or other movement/exercise to clear your mind; meditate, journal, or listen to calming music. escape the chaos if you need to – but do it in a healthy way!
7. Spend time alone (if you want to): all the holiday togetherness can be a lot! taking some time for yourself to decompress and check-in with what you need will allow you to keep showing up as your best self.
Do you have any go-to mental health tips for navigating the holidays? share in the comments so we can all spread the love! Hope your month starts off on the best note!