Each year, World Mental Health Day is celebrated on October 10. It’s an international day to raise awareness, reduce the stigma surrounding mental health, and serves as a reminder of how important our mental health is. The American Psychological Association found that more people in the United States report that their stress increases, rather than decreases, during the holiday season.
While the holiday season may feel far away right now, it’s never too early to begin to prioritize your mental health. Here are 10 ways to prepare your mental health for the upcoming holiday season!
1. Set Realistic Expectations: Understand that holidays rarely go perfectly. Set achievable goals and realistic expectations to avoid unnecessary stress and disappointment.
2. Plan Ahead: Early planning can alleviate last-minute pressures. List your tasks, prioritize them, and schedule time for self-care and relaxation.
3. Establish Boundaries: Protect your mental health by setting clear boundaries. Communicate your limits to family and friends to prevent feeling overwhelmed, and then honor the boundaries that you’ve set for yourself.
4. Practice Gratitude: Focusing on positive aspects of your life can improve your mood. Acknowledge and appreciate the good in your life, even if it feels small at the moment!
5. Manage Financial Stress: Budget for the holidays to avoid financial strain. Be honest about what you can afford, and remember that thoughtful gifts are typically the most meaningful.
6. Limit Social Media Consumption: Social media can create unrealistic expectations and increase anxiety. Limit your usage, and engage in activities that genuinely make you happy. Challenge yourself to have a social media-free day and instead spend time with family or friends.
7. Seek Professional Help if Necessary: If the holiday blues are too heavy, consider speaking with a mental health professional for support and guidance. There’s no shame in needing help.
8. Prioritize Self-Care: Engage in activities that help you relax and recharge, like reading, exercising, or meditating with Yoga Wake Up. Prioritizing self-care is crucial for maintaining a healthy mind.
9. Connect with Loved Ones: Strengthen your support system by spending time with family and friends in person or virtually. Sharing feelings and experiences can be therapeutic.
10. Volunteer or Give Back: Helping others can provide a sense of purpose and community. Consider volunteering or donating to a charitable organization this holiday season, and remember that small acts of kindness go a long way!
This holiday season, don’t let stress get the best of you. With the Yoga Wake Up app, you can begin and end each day with audio-guided yoga and meditation sessions that allow you to prioritize mindfulness and mental health from sunrise to sunset. Start your free trial now!