During the festive season it’s natural to feel some degree of stress or anxiety. Whether it is due to the financial side of things, the extra workload or simply trying to meet everyone’s expectations, it can be a tough time of year. But by taking a few simple steps and focussing on the things you enjoy, you and your family can make the most of this Christmas:
- Pace yourself
Make a list and don’t try and do everything yourself, make sure you allocate jobs to those around you. It is traditionally a time for getting together with family and friends but try not to be tempted to overdo it, learn to say no to invitations and pace yourself. Why not ask other family members to bring different parts of the meal, such as snacks, salads or desserts, don’t be afraid to ask for help. With so much going on it is easy to end up missing out on valuable sleep, but good quality sleep makes a big difference to how we feel mentally and physically, so it’s important to get enough.
- Keep active
It’s essential to stay active and keep to your exercise routines, which can be easy to skip, especially when it’s cold outside and you have a long list of to do’s. Taking a daily 15-minute walk can be enough to give you a breath of fresh air, a quick blast of vitamin D and boost your mood. There is a wealth of data which suggests that reduced daylight can have a negative effect on mood so even more reason to get outdoors into the natural daylight as much as possible.
- Avoid over indulging
Try to monitor your alcohol intake and remember to have some soft drinks and keep rehydrated with plenty of water. Over indulging in the ‘festive spirit’ can sometimes cause conflicts and arguments especially when things get heated between family members who are not used to spending so much time together. Christmas does seem to be all about excess but try to have a bit of what you fancy and stick to the advice ‘everything in moderation’.
- Look out for others
Some of us look forward to Christmas but for others it can be a difficult time so it’s important to keep an eye on those around you. If you suspect that a friend, family member or colleague might be struggling with their mental health visit this link to find out the best way that you can help them: https://www.nhs.uk/oneyou/every-mind-matters/
- Don’t be on your own
Is there anyone you know who might also be lonely or far from their family this Christmas or are you concerned about being on your own if you are single and unable to spend it with family? Think about inviting a few others over who are in the same boat as you and consider offering your house as a venue for the event. If your children will be with their other parent for Christmas, make sure your friends and family know you are going to be alone. You may find that they want to invite you to spend the day or afternoon with them.
- Support for carers
Caring for a loved one or friend can be tiring during any month of the year but over the festive season it can be even more demanding. You may be a parent carer looking after a child with a disability, a young carer or a working carer who juggles a job with caring duties. Do remember that you’re not on your own and there are support groups and hubs available to you. Click here to find your nearest services www.warwickshire.gov.uk/carers