Shifting the focus to ourselves during this time of year can help build inner strength when things externally feel out of your control. Here are a few tips on how to focus on your self-care as we approach the New Year.
Set realistic expectations: Many times, we have an unrealistic idea of what the holiday season will look like, whether it’s expectations of finding the perfect gifts or throwing the perfect party. Get yourself out of this space by adjusting your expectations and setting realistic goals.
Move your body: Physical activity is a great way to de-stress and release those feel-good endorphins into your system. Be active — move, stretch, take a walk, get out in the fresh air. Even 15 minutes of movement can make a big difference.
Connect with others: The holiday season is often referred to as the happiest time of the year, but it might also bring up feelings of loneliness and loss. It can be easy to disengage from everything when these feelings arise, but It’s important to resist that desire. Make plans to spend time with supportive friends and loved ones, or sign up to volunteer with a local nonprofit, to help make connections and stay grounded during the holiday hubbub.
Practice mindfulness: Meditation and mindfulness can be valuable tools to deal with anxiety and stress, especially during a busy holiday season filled with travel. Join Jefferson Center and the Jefferson County Public Library for a free, weekly call-in meditation center. Get more info here.
Be aware of your triggers: Each of us has unique emotional experiences that can cause us to feel unsettled in situations that feel familiar. During the holidays, that could be certain traditions that invoke painful memories, certain people who are challenging to be around, or even the added stress of preparing for gatherings. Spend some time beforehand thinking about what your triggers are and how you’d like to respond to them. If you need extra support, schedule time with your doctor/therapist to help you work through this process.
Connect with us: Especially during the holidays, mental health struggles can be isolating. Remember that you aren’t alone and seek help from mental health professionals when you need it. Contact Jefferson Center at 720-791-2735 to schedule an appointment or to get in touch with our Navigation team.