​​BaseKit’s tips for positive mental health at Christmas

basekit mental health at christmas tips

Christmas for some is the most exciting and fun time of the year, a time to spend with family and friends, and making the most of the celebrations. But for others, it can be one of the hardest times of the year.

At BaseKit we know it’s important to realise that not everyone’s the same, everyone feels different and everyone is different, and making sure our peers are ok is top priority. So, the Mental Health Team have shared 5 ideas on what people can do over the Christmas period to try and enjoy every moment, even if they’re struggling with their mental health.

Create boundaries

It’s crucial during the festive period to set boundaries. Without them, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed. This could be driven by expectations you set for yourself, such as buying gifts and meeting with friends, or, from others around you who don’t quite understand how you’re feeling. Make sure you prioritise what truly matters to you, and communicate openly with friends and family. Saying no isn’t selfish, it’s an act of self care and can really help manage your feelings, to avoid yourself feeling overwhelmed.

Keep your normal routine

Amidst the craziness of festive activities, it’s important you try to stay in some sort of routine – a routine you are used to in any ‘normal’ period of time which helps you manage your mental health. This could be engaging in activities that make you feel recharged such as your weekly gym class or a quick walk round the block, or simply just taking that quiet moment to yourself to reflect and regroup your thoughts. Allow yourself to experience your emotions without suppressing them and put yourself first. It might not be easy, but will definitely help in supporting your overall wellbeing.

Don’t be afraid to connect and seek support

Although many elements of Christmas make people feel as if it’s a time of being together, it can also increase feelings of sadness and loneliness in others. It’s really important that you connect with loved ones, reach out to friends, or contact support groups, even if it’s virtually. By engaging in these, it will help create the sense of connection, and can be the way to share your thoughts and feelings. Remember, seeking support is a sign of strength, it takes courage and shows you are resilient.

Manage financial stress

Financial strain during the holidays can significantly impact mental health. Think about setting a budget for gifts, decorations, and festivities, or consider alternative ways to celebrate, such as homemade gifts or organising low-cost activities. Christmas is a time to make great memories so focus on meaningful experiences instead, and if your financial worries become overwhelming, reach out to your support system. People will be a lot more understanding than you expect.

Be realistic

Christmas may seem perfect through online channels such as social media, but it’s unlikely it is. Embrace imperfections and understand that not everything will, or needs to go, without mishap. Things may not go according to plan, and that’s ok. Allow yourself to enjoy the moment, even if it’s not as perfect as you planned.

Even though the Christmas period can be both joyous and challenging for mental health, by creating boundaries, keeping in a routine, seeking support, managing finances, and setting realistic expectations, you can prioritise your mental well-being during this time. Remember, it’s essential to be kind to yourself and prioritise what truly matters.

If you need support, we’d suggest taking a look at some of the following:

Mind – Christmas & Mental Health

Samaritans – Finding things hard over the festive period

Mental Health Foundation – Top tips for looking after your mental health at Christmas

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