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Looking after your mental health at Christmas

In this week’s blow we thought we would do things a little different and talk about the ways to look after yourself and those around you at Christmas time.

There are many causes of stress at Christmas from running out of wrapping paper, to not being able to find the end of the Sellotape roll to those bigger concerns around financial stresses and the impact of those on your mental health.

Causes of stress at Christmas

It’s a shorter working month –  December is a shorter working month, meaning less time to get everything at work completed before the start of a new year, we all know the feeling of an increased work load and the anxiety it causes.

It’s the most expensive time of the year – It is undoubtedly the most expensive time of the year without question, with the average Brit expected to spend an average of £602 each on Christmas gifts in 2023, which is an increase of 40% from 2022.

Tis the season to get sick – the winter months are notorious for coughs, colds and viruses to do the rounds, which as a result leads to less working time due to sickness and absence. This again causes stress and anxiety on those who are poorly and those who are picking up the extra workload in their colleagues’ absence.

Childcare responsibilities – As schools break up it can be difficult at this time of year to find suitable childcare to support working families. We all want to achieve the perfect work life balance but at this time of the year it can be increasingly difficult to gain.

The Mental Health Foundation talk about being kind to yourself at Christmas and they talk about six top tips to help you through the festive season, they include:

Open up

Be honest with those around you as to how you are feeling this festive period, if things are getting to much then don’t bottle it up reach out to those who you trust for their support and friendship. Remember it’s good to talk.

Make time for yourself

Christmas time can be very busy one, with visiting friends and family and having to be with others a lot of the time. Remember you don’t have to say ‘yes’ to everything, take a break from it all and do something that is good for you.

Be you

You may feel pressured to buy lots of presents and entertain the family and keep up with everyone else, but remember you don’t have to, remember to be you and do what makes you happy.

Don’t forgot to eat something healthy amongst all those treats

Remember that moderation is key, this will help you to keep your mental health on track as an excess amount of sugar and alcohol may have an adverse effect on your own mental health and those around you.

Go outside

Its that time of year again when its frosty and cold, remember that going outside and having a walk in the fresh air will do your mental health the world of good, plus it also helps to counterbalance all the indulgence!

Do something that makes you happy

You may join a local group, take up a new hobby or help with some volunteering, whatever makes you happy and has a positive impact on your wellbeing will boost your mental health in more ways than one.

As an employer, you can offer support such as an employee assistance programme or mental health first aider training to support your work force with their mental health.

If you need further support or guidance with regards to mental health in the workplace then View HR can support you with this so please do get in touch with the team to find out more.