Being away from friends and family can be tough, especially during the holidays. Hence it is important to acknowledge and take care of ourselves.
While Thanksgiving is usually a time of joy, festivities and being reunited with family members and loved ones, spending it with others is not always an option for some of us, and it is important to acknowledge that spending it alone is fine too.
As this holiday is often centered around family-based traditions and celebrations, you may find yourself feeling a little down, lonely or even dreading the upcoming days if you are spending it by yourself, and this is completely understandable!
Whether this is due to long-distance, health related issues or other personal reasons, it is important to know how to prioritize and take care of your mental health, to make this holiday easier and more enjoyable for you. Here are a few tips on how to prioritize and maintain your mental health while spending the holiday alone.
1. Acknowledge your feelings
Being honest with yourself about what you are feeling. Even though it may feel easier to try to reject negative feelings in order to not experience them, emotional acceptance is key in improving your mood and managing your overall mental health.
There are many ways to do this, and it is important to find the one that works for you.
Some options include journaling, mindfulness, meditation and talking to people, which can include close ones but also professionals.
2. Establish and maintain a good routine
Maintaining a healthy and steady routine can have a positive impact on mental health.
Having a clear routine helps you to achieve mini goals and targets, from the moment you wake up in the morning until the second you go to sleep at night, awarding you with an overall sense of achievement and productivity.
It is also proven to reduce overall stress levels, as it reduces the number of small decisions that you have to make during the day, allowing you to put more focus into the important ones.
Finally, having a routine that promotes healthy habits such as balanced eating and exercise will allow you to feel more relaxed, fulfilled and confident, thus improving your overall mood.
3. Give thanks
When spending the holiday alone, it is easy to focus on what you are missing out on, making you forget the true meaning of Thanksgiving, which is to be thankful for what you already have.
Positive psychology studies show that gratitude is strongly associated with happier emotions, a better ability to deal with adversity and even better interpersonal relationships.
By expressing gratitude, you are recognizing and appreciating all the sources of goodness in your life. Reminding yourself of these things in times of loneliness can help you maintain a positive mindset and allow you to persevere through difficult times.
4. Connect and reach out for support
These tips are a great way of getting yourself out of the holiday blues. However, if your feelings of loneliness and sadness persist or worsen after the holiday has passed, you may want to consider seeking out professional help. GenMind™, for instance, is a tool that will allow you to assess your day-to-day symptoms, allowing your healthcare provider to evaluate your situation with higher accuracy, and create a more efficient and personalized treatment plan for you.
We hope you enjoy your holiday. Happy Thanksgiving!
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