6th December 2016 – BuzzFeed News – 21 Small Changes You Should Make This Christmas

The Christmas period often means a break in your usual routine. Perhaps you’re off from school or work and some of you will have to return home when you might be more comfortable somewhere else. We recently asked members of the BuzzFeed Community to tell us how they look after themselves over the Christmas period. Here are some of their most helpful pieces of advice.

Don’t put pressure on yourself

“Understand that expectations lie to you. Thanks to the never-ending Christmas ads and people constantly sharing their holiday highlights it’s easy to build up particular expectations. Instead, remind yourself to practice gratitude for what you do have.”

– Amy Gunkler, via Facebook

Take a break

“I have a big family so gatherings can be kind of overwhelming. I take some time to myself to read, draw, watch films and a walk in the fresh air always helps clear away the fog.”

– Hannah Rose, via Facebook

Dr Joanna Silver, psychologist at Nightingale Hospital, adds: “It’s important to realise that it is normal to feel anxious at gatherings so don’t put too much pressure on yourself to ‘perform.’ Concentrating on breathing properly can be really helpful. It can sometimes be helpful to go to a large gathering with a friend so that you feel more comfortable.”

Find comfort in your pets

“I have an emotional support animal. I trained and certified Noah as a therapy dog before I ended up getting diagnosed with anxiety and depression (and realizing how much I needed him), but now that he’s certified as an ESA, I can take him with me when I travel (especially home for the holidays). Even when things get rough, I have all the puppy kisses I need to get me through. No matter what Christmas catastrophes I face, Noah has me all covered.”


Schedule Christmas-free days

“I always get my shopping done early (but NEVER on the weekends). I buy as many gifts as possible online. I keep a checklist of who I am buying for and what I’m getting them and I cross the items off once done.

“Definitely schedule ‘No Holiday’ days: no writing cards, no wrapping, baking, shopping, etc. Instead, make it a day to lay on the couch and watch a movie. Also don’t over schedule, don’t feel like you have to go to all the parties.”

– Kirsten Hansen, via Facebook

Ignore social media as much as you can

Turn off that Facebook ‘On This Day’ nonsense. I had a lovely Christmas trip to Denmark planned with a guy I was dating. It was early December when he told me not to show up, so reliving the days up to that trip and the weeks after kind of strike a nerve.”

– Angela Christine, via Facebook

Full article available online here

“When you have a problem and you drink, take drugs or gamble, the problem won’t go away. Stay and tackle the problem”