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Little tips to improve mental wellbeing during Christmas and beyond

By Just Be Croydon

Keeping up our healthy lifestyles over Christmas can be tricky. It’s dark and cold outside, it can be a stressful time with all the organising, and there’s temptation everywhere. But Christmas can be a great time to begin to address some of our unhealthy choices and to improve our mental wellbeing ready for the New Year.

 

Staying Connected

It may be more obvious at Christmas time, but family and friends can be there for us every day, and that’s good for our mental wellbeing. If you are feeling lonely or isolated, keeping in touch with people or participating in activities can help you to stay well and engaged.

If you’re unsure about whether to attend a family gathering, take a trip out with friends or attend an event, it’s worth considering just how good for your mental wellbeing it really can be. Equally, it could be nice to host some of your nearest and dearest to show them that you appreciate them – it doesn’t have to cost much. Often, just sitting down and talking to someone can be very beneficial.

 

Drinking less

Alcohol consumption is in abundance this time of the year, with Travelodge reporting in 2013 that the average first alcoholic drink on Christmas day is at 9:05am. But alcohol can have a huge effect on our mental health, leaving us unable to manage negative emotions in a healthy way.

There are many benefits to reducing the amounts of alcohol we drink.

A quick tip is to look out for lower alcohol versions of favourite tipples. These drinks have the same taste but contain significantly lower levels of alcohol, making them much less damaging to our health and reducing the risk of feeling rubbish the next day!

 

Staying on top of finances

Christmas can be an expensive time of year. In fact, many of us won’t have paid it off until March according to Nationwide. The best way to reduce the stress surrounding money and Christmas is to plan well. Christmas presents can be bought throughout the year to spread the costs effectively and help reduce the stress we feel around this time of year.

It’s important to prioritise what you’re spending money on, particularly through the cold months. Paying for your house, heating and general bills should be top of the list.

Financial help and debt advice is available throughout the year here:  https://www.croydon.gov.uk/advice/benefits/welfare-benefits/wrtdebt.

 

Keeping fit

In the winter months, it’s difficult to stay focused on keeping active because it’s just so cold outside! But did you know exercising is a great way to improve mental wellbeing?

It may be difficult at this time of year but it’ll be worth it! Wrap up nice and warm and go for a quick walk or jog to improve your mental wellbeing and burn off some of those extra calories to.

Our food consumption usually increases at Christmas time. It seems like every table has an assortment box of chocolates on it, and the Christmas meal is almost challenging you to eat until you feel like you’ll pop!

But it doesn’t have to be like this. With some moderation, Christmas can be just as enjoyable and not as bad for our waistlines. We prepared a very useful guide here to help you be aware of Christmas calories.

As the year draws to a close, it’s important for us all to remember that mental health wellbeing is not just for Christmas, it’s for life. Keeping on top of our alcohol consumption, staying in touch with people, spending sensibly and doing a little regular exercise can help us all have a healthier and happier New Year.

 

Merry Christmas!

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