We have all been there. You are feeling stressed because you have several final exams coming up. There is a problem at work and it causing you to have anxiety. You are feeling unmotivated and depressed because of the pandemic and the way it feels like nothing is under your control. Mental health is extremely important and sometimes we push our mental health aside to quickly accomplish certain tasks. The pandemic especially has put both negative and positive light on mental health. It is important to remember to treat yourself like a car; you wouldn’t keep driving your car if you run out of gas, would you? Make sure you are recharged and are treating you and your mental health properly, especially during the holidays. Here are 5 ways you can make your mental health a priority this holiday season:
1. Stay away from your family members who “don’t get it”
This can be difficult, especially during the holidays when everyone else seems to be gathering with their family members at the dinner table to spend some quality time, however, it is important to spend time with those who make you feel valid and at your best. It may be hard to step away from your family, but change is always hard. If a certain change is difficult it may not always be a bad change. We are creatures of habit which makes it harder to stop hanging out with the same people as it feels like a routine, but in the long run, this change will be better for you as a whole.
2. Eat properly
This may seem like a minor aspect of your daily routine and overall cause to your mental health, but food can definitely either help or trigger your mental health issues. It is certainly easier said than done especially given the emotional state of the world, but eating a well-balanced, healthy diet full of plenty of colors, veggies, protein, healthy fats, and carbs is important in your daily life. Even if the world and its events seem to be out of your control, mental health linked to your nutrition is certainly not.
Similarly to eating properly, sleeping properly is vital, especially if sleeping better can be linked to an improvement in your overall mental health. It is stated that most adults should try to get at least 7 hours of sleep every night, but people underestimate how much they actually do sleep greatly. You may spend a large amount of time on your phone before going to bed(which is not recommended) or you may be a very light sleeper and it takes an hour or two for you to sleep. For these reasons, it is a great idea to make yourself go to sleep an hour or two before the estimated 7-hour mark.
4. Go to a doctor
This is certainly one of the first things you should do if you are struggling with mental health. Going to a doctor in a pandemic can certainly feel invalidating because you may feel like your mental health is not as valid of a reason to go to a doctor compared to someone with physical health problems. This is certainly not true. Society has time and time again made people feel mental health is much lesser of a concern than physical health which is false. Going to a doctor can help you feel much better with your mental health whether it be by receiving therapy or medication.
5. Make a routine
This one may seem insignificant, but making sure you have a sense of structure in your life is vital in a pandemic. Without structure, your mind has a tendency to wander off, and at times, even this could trigger bad mental health. Writing down a schedule can be something that greatly improves your mental health and as a cherry on top increases your productivity.