“The perfect Christmas doesn’t look like the ones on TV, it looks like the one you enjoy. There’s so much pressure to be happy and to be part of a big celebration but I’ve found that finding downtime, solitude and space to simply feel however I feel makes the holidays easier to manage.
Whether it’s a whole day of peace and quiet or locking yourself in the loo for a few minutes of meditation, being able to recharge can make a world of difference. It gives me the ability to truly enjoy time with loved ones without burning myself out.
A few of my favourite tricks to recharge my mental batteries are:
• The dog is always happy to go out – fresh air and a bit of movement really does clear out the cobwebs.
• Meditation – taking time to be in the moment can stave off anxiety spirals before they become overwhelming.
• Your phone is useful – text a friend, watch that video that always makes you laugh, look at pictures of chilled out capybaras. Distractions can really help.
• Low key alternatives – sometimes family can be too much, try coffee with a friend or visit a local community event for a change of scene. (https://www.facebook.com/425132480881448/posts/pfbid02nvbNvTh4up2vKUYReWkcQEmPbcU3mvy7oRf24ccy7HHWSsjifrW3CoT1NdstM3iol/?app=fbl)
If social anxiety has taught me anything, it’s that people and relationships matter, the rest doesn’t. Celebrate with your loved ones in the way that works best for you and that will be a perfect Christmas.”
p.s. our thanks goes to Katie, one of volunteers peer workers for this article. Lived Experience proves to be very helpful.
Photo – The Old Packhorse Bridge – Carrbridge, Scotland. (Maggie Wright)