Tuesday, 18 December 2012

Blogmas day 18: My top 10 tips!

I was asked to do this for a charity in November, but thought it would be useful to post it on here too :-) I wouldn't say it's just for people with mental illnesses, it can be adapted to suit anyone!

1. Have someone there that you trust, to talk to
One of the biggest mistakes people with mental illnesses make is bottling up negative emotions.  Personally, when I am really down, I can convince myself that no one cares and I’m just being a nuisance by asking for help. WRONG! You’d want someone to come to you if they had a problem, and your friends and family feel the exact same way about you. They want to be there for you and want to help you in any way possible, so don’t be afraid to pick up the phone!

2. Have distractions
Sometimes it can seem impossible to participate in the festivities. There is nothing you can do to bring yourself to face anything, so it’s important to have past times that you actually enjoy. I find reading a book a great distraction. It allows you to escape to another world and forget your own. Other things can include watching a film, going for a walk or writing. Writing down your thoughts can be extremely cathartic and a good way of purging negative emotion.

3. Don’t drink too much
I’m not saying don’t drink alcohol as it’s something most people do during the Christmas season. DO enjoy a drink if you wish to, but don’t overdo it. Alcohol ultimately leaves us feeling worse. Too much alcohol can add to depression, making us more irritable, tired and lethargic.

4. Eat well
Remember to nourish yourself! When we’re stressed or going through a rough patch, we often forget to look after ourselves. Eat plenty of fresh fruit and veg as energy levels will remain high and you’ll feel up to celebrating.

5. Move!
Exercise is a great way to boost your mood. One thing to really embrace is the weather during Christmas. It’s often cold and crisp, but when the sun is out, the scenery is so beautiful. Go out and enjoy it! Even walking will release endorphins which naturally make us feel better

6. Sleep
Simply not getting enough sleep can make you feel terrible and grouchy. Make sure you get enough sleep at night, even if it means going to bed earlier. For those that suffer with insomnia, try having a relaxing bath before going to bed as the decline in temperature after getting out, can make us feel sleepy. There are also plenty of herbal remedies out there and lavender underneath pillows can sometimes help. I always find a hot chocolate before bed works wonders!

7. Help someone else
Everyone gets a warm feeling inside when you know you’ve helped someone else out. From volunteering to just going to visit your Nan with a cake you’ve baked for her, will definitely make you feel better! Seeing the smile on their face, will instantly put a smile on yours too!

8. Get creative
It will sound clich├ęd but one thing I have learnt to do, is appreciate the small things in life. Things like homemade Christmas cards, poems, cakes and decorations definitely mean more to me than any expensive gadget. Making things for people allows you to enjoy Christmas and gives you something new to do. Who knows, you may discover a new talent!

9. Don’t feel pressured
This can be applied to many things, from depression to eating disorders. Remember that you are you own person and no one can force you to do anything that you don’t want to. Whether it’s eating/drinking or participating in something. It is your Christmas too, so you have to do what is best for you. No one will think any differently of you if you don’t do something.

10. Enjoy
Lastly, just enjoy yourself. Despite it being a difficult time of year, it does only happen once and when it’s gone, we can’t get it back. Christmas is a time of warmth, where family and friends come together to celebrate. YOU are part of a family and community. You deserve to be happy this Christmas.



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1 comment

melrose said...

Brilliant!
Seems obviousness now but I've done every one of those wrong, no wonder its been rubbish haha
Love you, don't forget those for yourself as well xx

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