Tips for coping in the run up to Christmas

29/11/23Tips for coping in the run up to Christmas

This time of year can be hard for lots of us, for many different reasons. The shorter days and colder weather can make it more difficult to do some of the things that keep us happy and healthy, like going outdoors or meeting up with friends. The run up to Christmas will be a happy time for many, but it can also feel overwhelming at times. There is more expectation to socialise, and to spend money, which can cause stress and anxiety, especially as the cost of living has soared recently. So what can we do?

  1. Remind yourself that it’s ok to have mixed feelings

It’s normal to sometimes feel excited, calm or happy, but other times to feel sad, angry or stressed. There are no “good” and “bad” emotions. When things feel overwhelming, take a few deep breaths and say to yourself that it’s ok you are feeling this way.

  1. Get creative

When the weather started turning, I noticed that I was on my phone doing a lot more “doomscrolling” (scrolling endlessly through social media). Now, I love social media to a point. It gives me ideas for recipes, things to do with my family and I love seeing photos that my friends and relatives post. But, I also recognise that if I’m just scrolling endlessly, it very soon stops feeling good. I realised a lot of it was just habit and something to do with my hands, so I decided to relearn how to knit. It wasn’t about the end product of what I was knitting, but doing something creative with my hands stopped me looking at my phone so much. And it felt better. It doesn’t have to be knitting – making Christmas cards, writing or any arts and crafts project could work too, and it’s ideal for cold or rainy evenings.

  1. When you brush your teeth tonight, take that two minutes to check in and ask yourself how you feel. Stressed? Tired? At what points today did you feel good, and when not so good? After doing this a few times you may notice patterns. Taking a few minutes like this allows us to identify triggers (things that cause stress) and think about what support we might and when.

If you feel like you might need some emotional support in the coming months, talk to your GP or you can search for a counsellor on the BACP website

 

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