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Mental health check-in

Mental health check-in

This time of year, everything tends to get ten times crazier, which is why now more than ever you need a mental health check-in. I know it is not just crazy because of the holidays but also because of the various other moving factors. And I know better than I should at 26 that added extra onto an already full play the first thing that seems to go is our mental health. 

 

Now some of you may be asking what exactly makes the end of the year so crazy. A lot of companies end of the quarter is also in December; plus, a lot of employees take extended vacation around this time of year. Now on top of your regular responsibilities you also have to cover other people’s work; all while making sure the end of the year is okay. Plus, if you work retail so many companies are trying to push out the old to make room for the new.  Now you add holiday shopping, family dinners, company parties, and all the other holiday activities/task it takes a lot out of you. 

 

So, when everything gets crazy what exactly can one do? How does one even manage all that extra work and still pause to do a mental health check-in? These are questions I constantly ask myself around this time of year! And with those questions, I have been able to find solutions that work for me of course with the help of a lovely professional as I am not one. Here is what I’ve learned that honesty has made such a huge difference for me around the holiday season. 

 

  • Set healthy boundaries and enforce them 
    • You should always be setting boundaries but this time of year it is okay to set up new ones that only last around the holiday time. 
    • Now, these can be as simple as I’m leaving this party at 8:30 pm no matter what to saying no to going to get dinner. 
    • You are the keeper of your time and energy; it’s okay to adjust and account for the added stress and hassle at the end of the year. 

 

  • Make sure your taking time for you
    • This is always the hardest part for me; so, what I do is every night I set an alarm and I stop whatever I am doing to spend 30 minutes doing my self-care. I do this such as writing in my journal wash my face, reading a book, etc. Anything that is just “me time”.
    • Taking 30 minutes of “me time” helps remind me that although it is the season of giving; I cannot help anyone if I am a wreck. 

 

  • Remember it is not a competition 
    • Gift-giving and holiday parties are not a competition it is not about who can throw the best and biggest party or who can give the most expensive gift. It is all about spending time and being surrounded by the people who love you. 
    • Not everyone is in the same financial situation or even point in their life; so yes, someone may be able to spend $200 on a gift for each person and you may only be able to spend $20 that is okay!
    • Again, this time of year is all about reminding the people you care about how much you love and care about them. 

 

  • Ask yourself if it is worth the stress
    • I know this may sound crazy, but some things truly are not worth it. For example, I love wrapping each gift adding ribbon, a bow, and a name tag however in the past if I can’t find a ribbon or don’t have the time to do so I won’t. All because I know I love it, but it will be destroyed 10 seconds after giving it to someone. 
    • Trying to find the perfect gift or the gift of the season or getting all the details perfect is stressful and honestly not always worth it. It is okay and encouraged to stop and ask if it is worth it. 

 

  • Create a daily to-do list
    • Part of the stress (at least for me) is there is so much that needs to be done that I get so overwhelmed that forget what I need to do or even where to start. 
    • The best thing I do is each night before I go to bed, I write down what needs to get done. I break it up into 3 categories “Needs to be done, not urgent but important, and if done bonus points”. Needs to be done are things that cannot be pushed off another day, not urgent but important is things I am planning to get done but if not, it is okay, and if done bonus points are can be pushed off a day or even 2 but if I have time why not. Not only does this prioritize things for me but it also sets me up for the next day. 

 

  • Ask for help 
    • I don’t know but there is this expectation that when it comes to work or even the holidays asking for help is frowned upon. With gifts so many people don’t know what to get their parents or siblings. And when they ask people for help or advice they are often met with “How do you not know what to get them?! They are YOUR parents!” And I hate that so let’s stop doing that. It makes people asking for help feel bad and makes us never want to ask for help. Some people are hard to shop for. With work, the dumb concept of asking for help is often met with the idea that you can’t handle your job or don’t know what to do. Which again is so fu*ked up and needs to get gone. 
    • If you are struggling, ask for help. 

 

  • Compliment yourself 
    • This may sound weird but with all the extras going on during this time we forget how hard we, ourselves are working. So, take time throughout the day to look in the mirror, smile at yourself, and say things like “I’m proud of you for working so hard, I’m proud of you for how far you come, I’m proud of you for how you are handling all of this, you are doing amazing, you look fabulous, or there is nothing you cannot do. 
    • Taking time to be your own hype person or cheerleader is so important because you need to believe in yourself. 

 

The Holidays to a lot of people is the most magical time of the year. However, for a lot of us, it comes with some added stress and anxiety. Although it is the time for giving and being there for others, it is more important than ever to do a mental health check-in this time of year. 

 

“If it costs you your peace, it is too expensive” – Unknown 

 

This time of year should be magical, special, filled with joy, and lots of love. But if you are not taking care of yourself or doing a Mental Health check-in; you are only ruining all the possibilities and opportunities that truly make this time of year magical. Typically, I would say if not for you do it for me, but not his time. This is your life and your health do not do it for me; do it for you. Because you deserve it. You deserve to enjoy and love this time of year without worrying about the extra stress. If you need any more convincing head on over to “putting you first this holiday season” for a few more points and even some tips. But I hope this year; you do as many mental health check-ins as you need. As I want this holiday season to be even more magical, special, and filled with love and joy as years past for you. -Your unofficial big sis KMH

 

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