Six Tips to Reduce Holiday Stress and Anxiety
It’s the most wonderful time of the year…except when it isn’t. For most, the holidays are a time to look forward to each year. A time filled with joy, family, friends, gifts, great food and get-togethers. But for some, it can be an overwhelming season. The busyness, the financial implications, even the loneliness, can take a toll and result in stress and/or anxiety.
If you or someone you love struggles with mental health challenges during the holiday season, you’re not alone! According to the American Psychological Association, 38% of people say their stress increases during the holiday season, which can lead to physical illness, depression, anxiety and substance misuse.
At Integrity Mind Psychiatry, we love to help people deal with life’s issues, overcome mental health challenges and learn to live in a healthy, happy way. Check out our top tips for dealing with holiday stress and anxiety:
- Get up and go (outside!). Staying active is our top tip as a great way to relieve stress and boost your mood and energy levels this holiday season. Exercise has been proven to reduce tension, fatigue, anger and stress. So no matter how crazy the holidays get, it’s important to keep up with your exercise routine. Whether you’re going for a walk or just stepping outside to get some fresh air, being outside will help you relax and is a proven mood booster!
- Eat a balanced diet. It’s easy to overdo it during the holiday season. All the treats, the rich foods, the holiday meals, the cookies and cakes and pies, oh my! But have you ever noticed that if you eat a lot of bad foods, you start to feel bad? Eating real (whole) foods instead of empty-calorie treats will help keep you healthy, your energy up, your weight down and you’ll feel better all around.
- Prioritize sleep. From all the holiday get-togethers and late-night shopping to out-of-town family staying over, there are plenty of reasons we don’t get enough rest during the holidays. But getting a good night’s sleep reduces irritability and helps stabilize your mood. It can even help ward off sickness! Sleep is powerful.
- Plan early. Don’t go into the holidays just hoping you’ll get everything done. Plan a loose schedule of when you need to buy gifts, bake goodies, see family and friends. Some people like an old-fashioned paper list and others like to set reminders on their phone. Eiter is great! And by having a plan, you’ll feel more prepared and less anxious about all the busyness of the holiday season.
- Know your limits. Especially if you are an introvert, recognize that you don’t have to say yes to every gathering, party, concert, service and get-together that you are invited to. Say no to the things you don’t want to do so you can make time for the things that matter to you the most.
- Reach out and don’t be afraid to ask for help. Even if you apply all of these tips, for some people, the holidays are just a tough time. If you can relate, please reach out for help. IntegrityMind Psychiatry is here for you. There is nothing to be ashamed of, and asking for help does not make you weak. It is an important step to making sure you are taking care of you.
Meet Dr. Paul Wright
Dr. Wright at IntegrityMind Psychiatry advocates for an optimistic and ambitious approach to mental health. He believes that medication may be one part of a holistic treatment approach, but that in most cases medication alone is not enough. Dr. Wright integrates a depth of knowledge and experience to offer an individualized, understanding and careful approach to help individuals navigate a variety of mental health challenges.
Holistic Help For the Whole You
We hope you will get out this holiday season and be social. A festive get-together with a friend could be just what your mental health needs. And if you find that you need a little support navigating the holidays, Integrity Mind Psychiatry is here for you.
At IntegrityMind Psychiatry, they know that people are wonderfully unique, with their own life map and personality landscape. Therefore, Dr. Wright doesn’t over-focus on a specific diagnosis or rush to label people. While a diagnosis can be helpful in gaining a better understanding of a condition and finding the right treatment approach, his focus is less on a label and more on practical help for an improved life.
Dr. Wright sees people for help with issues including:
- Addiction Issues
- Navigating Life Transitions
- Relationship Challenges
- Bipolar Disorder
With the support you need in place, this year’s holiday season really can be the most wonderful time of the year. Please reach out to schedule an initial consultation.