With a new year quickly approaching, there’s a light at the end of the tunnel. For many, however, the holidays can be a difficult time of year. Cold weather, financial strain, and endless work and family obligations create a recipe for stress. If you’re not able to see your family this year, you may be having a hard time feeling the traditional holiday cheer. Don’t worry – you’re not alone.
If you’re struggling with the holiday blues or want to maintain sanity during the holiday season, here are some simple tips that might help wrap up the year with cheer and joy.
Wrap Up the Year with Cheer
Spend time on self-care
There’s nothing selfish about self-care. In fact, taking a little time to yourself may be just what you need to relieve stress and reduce anxiety. Stock upon natural wellness products and settle in for a good old-fashioned spa day at home or grab a book and snuggle up with a mug of hot cocoa next to the fire. It doesn’t have to be fancy – whatever helps you clear your mind and resettle your spirit.
Reach out to others
Though you may not be able to physically spend as much time with people as you’d like right now, you can still make connections on a daily basis. Reaching out to a loved one can help stave off feelings of isolation and loneliness. Call up a friend you haven’t talked to in a while, send an email, or take the time to write a letter by hand. If you’re comfortable, you might even meet a friend for a walk on a nice day.
Take a break from social media
In a time of social distancing, the Internet is a helpful tool to stay connected to friends and family from afar. Unfortunately, it has problems of its own. The constant influx of commentary and the pressure of keeping up in a world rife with comparison can lead to social media fatigue. Give yourself a break by limiting your social media use to a few minutes a day or, better yet, turn your phone off entirely and do a digital detox over the weekend.
Take your time in the sun
We all need our daily dose of vitamin D, but it can be hard to come by in the dreary days of winter. Just 15 to 20 minutes of sunlight per day could increase your brain’s production of serotonin which could boost your mood. Go for a walk before work, eat your lunch outside, or just take a break in the afternoon for a few minutes while the sun is out.
Get your daily dose of endorphins
Exercise plays an important role in maintaining physical and mental fitness, so find ways to include it in your weekly routine. If you don’t like the idea of walking or running outside, try an at-home workout or join a virtual fitness class. Now is the perfect time to try something new.
Seek support when you need it
We could all use a little help from time to time, especially in a time when a new challenge seems to arise each and every day. Reach out to a trusted friend, join a support group online, or talk to your doctor about treatments for anxiety and depression. Many companies are even offering telepsychiatry consultations online right now so you can get the help you need from home.
When you’re feeling blue, it can be difficult to balance the demands of work, travel, family obligations, and holiday shopping. It’s important to take care of yourself all year-round but give yourself a little extra love and patience this winter. Try some of the tips above to bring a little holiday cheer into your life.
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