The winter season can be a time of great joy, festivity, and good cheer. It’s a season for baked goods and family gatherings; for bright lights and spirited singing. But of course, for many of us, the season can also be a time of great stress. The days get darker as they get busier, and all the yuletide hustle and bustle can ultimately cause burnout and depression.
That’s what makes it so important to take a proactive approach to your mental wellbeing. Consider just a few strategies and suggestions.
Caring for Your Mental Health This Holiday Season
1) Be proactive against seasonal affective disorder (SAD).
A lot of people have seasonal depression, tied to the relative absence of natural light. If you’re someone who prefers spending lots of time outside each day, the onset of cold, dark days can be especially perilous.
Thankfully, there are some effective ways to protect yourself against seasonal depression. Invest in a sun lamp and spend a good half hour with it each day. Also commit to regular workouts a few times a week, outside or in temperature-controlled facilities, bundled in appropriate apparel.
2) Don’t let gift giving spiral out of control.
We all want to give the perfect gifts, letting the people in our lives know how much we love them. That’s a noble impulse, but it can sometimes curdle into something burdensome and stressful.
If gift giving has become a source of stress for you, it’s time to take a step back and reevaluate. The important thing is conveying your love to the people in your life, so don’t become anxious about overly expensive presents. Something simple and heartfelt is fine. A hand-written note or an invitation to get coffee can be more meaningful than a pricey gadget you found on Amazon.
3) Create boundaries.
If you’re traveling to see family over the holidays, you’ll want to leave some room to recharge your social battery. Maybe that means renting a hotel room where you can escape at the end of the day.
If that’s too expensive, or if you’re the one who’s hosting, just try to build a little “me time” into each day. This may mean sneaking off for a quiet breakfast alone, or else excusing yourself for a solo walk around the block in the middle of the afternoon.
4) Choose peace over tradition.
Holiday traditions can be a ton of fun… except when they’re not. All too often, we cling to traditions out of a sense of obligation, even when they no longer bring us joy.
For example, maybe one of your holiday traditions is to do last-minute shopping at the mall… yet as you get a little older, you find that the very thought of braving mall traffic is a source of anxiety. There’s no shame in retiring that tradition in favor of peace and serenity. Maybe even start a new tradition that won’t be quite as taxing or as stressful.
5) Know when to say “no.”
Along the same lines, remember that it’s not up to you to “make” anyone’s holiday. If you take on all the work year after year and desperately need a break, it’s okay to say so! Invite someone else to make the big family meal this year, or to host the holiday party. There’s no reason why you have to bear the same burdens every year, especially if they’re sapping your sanity or if you’re just not in the right headspace this year.
6) Switch off social media.
As if the holiday hustle wasn’t draining enough, social media constantly subjects us to wearying headlines, fighting, comparisons, and other thieves of joy.
This holiday season, why not give yourself one of the greatest gifts of all: A week or two without logging into Facebook or Twitter.
Have a Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays
Do you increasingly find the holiday season to be a source of stress? This year, reclaim it as something fun, joyful, and live giving. Use some of these tips to safeguard your mental health. And if you want to give yourself an early Christmas gift of relaxing CBD, shop the Asé Pure Naturals store today.