The unique challenges of the ongoing pandemic mixed with increased holiday planning stressors can seem daunting. Start now to plan for your family’s upcoming holiday celebrations using practical tips for getting through the next few months without becoming overwhelmed and anxious about the unknown outcomes regarding the future.
Develop a Holiday Plan & Keep Things Simple to Maintain Health
Now more than ever, parents and every couple or person should develop a realistic holiday plan. Every psychiatrist knows that when people become worried about some future event or time, that underlying worry, fear or anxiety can wreak havoc both on our mental and emotional health and on our physical health as well.
Just like any crisis situation, having a doable and achievable plan that is step oriented could be key to maintaining an overall healthy balance. Also, stay grounded in reality and realize that this Thanksgiving, Christmas, Hanukkah or other wintertime holidays will be different from the norm.
Change doesn’t have to be bad, sad or something to fear. Positive change begins with a positive mindset that allows for last minute changes.
Make Your Family’s Health Your Top Priority
When trying to somehow pull-off a fabulous holiday, many get lost in the underlying emotions that will typically come up. With the ongoing pandemic taking another turn for the worse, people all across the country and around the world are at grave risk to their ongoing health and future stable life possibilities. It is essential to make your family’s health your number one top priority.
Listen to the Medical Experts & Avoid Travel & Large Crowds
As difficult as it will be, everyone should take heed of what our medical experts are telling us regarding the rise of COVID-19 cases and the projected impact that this could have in the coming months if every citizen neglects to make changes now. Travel should be avoided especially in areas where there are high numbers of new COVID-19 cases.
Also, it is crucial to wear masks when in public, to avoid large indoor gatherings, to wash hands and follow proper hygiene measures and to keep our living and work environments sanitized and clean to decrease the number of harmful germs.
If someone in the household has high risk factors for becoming sick, other family members should wear a mask when in the same room and to try to keep separated as much as possible.
Reassess Your Financial Situation & Stick to a Budget
One of the most troubling elements that people everywhere are currently dealing with are the huge financial changes that have occurred during these pandemic shutdowns and state mandatory ordinances. It is time to reassess your finances before purchasing holiday supplies and gifts. Set a budget and stick to it. Not doing so can have a devastating impact on your family’s ability to maintain current living standards.
Consider Celebrating with Homemade Gifts & Foods This Season
Parents should set a positive mood and model healthy positive behaviors. This can decrease those COVID-19 and holiday stressors immensely. There is always hope for a better tomorrow or next year.
Families are making their own simple gifts this year and are skipping a lot of the frills and distractions that the holidays usually bring. If able, perhaps every kid could have one or two desired gifts with more fun and low-cost options that focus on family involvement and having fun without costing a fortune.
Great Ideas for Managing Holiday Stress and Keeping it Under Control
Most people are suffering from pandemic fatigue today. All of the political turmoil and conflicting messages from government leaders are stressful. Also, frightening racial tensions at new highs have created an unhealthy and stressful situation.
Managing Holiday Stress is no easy task. However, here are some practical tips to keep holiday season stress under control. You can still plan for a fun holiday celebration even if toned down. Consider:
- Unplug from Electronics, TV News
- Practice Stress Reduction Measures Daily
- Get Outside for Fun Exercise
- Consider a Themed Holiday – Medieval, Victorian, or Rustic Farm Christmas
- Take Advantage of Local Outdoor Sites, Parks & Community Events
- Consider Adopting a Rescue Pet
- Make Homemade Decorations & Drive Around to See Lights
- Stay Connected via Skype, Social Media, Phone & Video Chats
- Start Online Family/Friend Games or Hobby Groups
- Plan a Neighborhood, Church, or Other Cookie Exchange – with COVID-19 precautions
- Involve Kids in Baking, Crafts & Family Game or Movie Nights
All these can help you in managing holiday stress. Find more mental health tips for managing holiday stress and COVID-19 stressors. Contact MedPsych Integrated for help with stress management and more. Visit our blog here anytime.
Have a safe, happy, and mentally healthy holiday season one-day-or-minute-at-a-time.