4 steps to keep the joy this Christmas

1) Be kind to yourself

Chances are you’ll be feeling a number of emotions after the Christmas announcements. Know that this is normal and okay – after all, it’s a totally unfamiliar situation that none of us would have wished for. So, acknowledge that and be empathetic to yourself for the feelings you’re observing.

Then turn that into self-care. What small things can you do for yourself - that you know contribute to you feeling happier, more uplifted and more energised? Perhaps its exercise, cooking, getting fresh air or simply having a bath!

Fun fact: most self-care activities that activate your parasympathetic nervous system in turn boost your immune system. Very timely!

2) Stay connected

Many of us won’t be spending time physically with people we love this Christmas, but staying connected is so important for our mental health. We have so much incredible technology at our fingertips and now is the time to take advantage.

We’re designed as humans to interact with one another, so get those video calls set up with family and friends!

Fun fact: 93% of communication is non-verbal. That’s why using video calls (i.e. facetime) provides more emotional benefits than using email, text messaging and even phone calls.

3) Practice gratitude

Our brain is designed to focus on the negatives, so don’t beat yourself up if you’re feeling the gloom. Instead, start by simply writing down 5 things you’re grateful to have this Christmas, despite the situation – even if it’s the simple things such as a warm home, food, water and health.

This will help to shift your perspective & where you’re placing your focus.

Fun fact: Studies show that ‘optimists’ live up to 10 years longer than ‘pessimists’ – the equivalent to the health impact of smoking!

4) Take control

Of what you can control…and let go of what you can’t. So much is outside of our control right now and there is nothing we can do about that. But there is still lots of things we can take charge of and impact on.

What’s 5 things you can take control of, or take action on this Christmas period? This will move you from helpless and overwhelmed to empowered.

Fun fact: On average we make around 35,000 remotely conscious decisions a day. Which ones are you going to focus your attention on this week?

Hope you all have a wonderful Christmas wherever you are – and don’t hesitate to reach out for any support, should you need it!

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