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Mental Health Guide (Holiday Chaos Edition)

There's something about the holiday season that makes people lose their minds. If it's not family pre
Mental Health Guide (Holiday Chaos Edition)
There’s something about the holiday season that makes people lose their minds.
If it’s not family pressure, it’s societal pressure.
If it’s not demands from friends, it’s demands you place on yourself.
We are in the thick of it–the thick of holiday mental health.
What can you do when all you feel is overwhelmed?
Is there any solution other than tucking your head between your legs and hoping for it all to be over soon?
There is.
It’s not a perfect approach–no approach from a random man on the Internet is–but it will help you find yourself amidst all the holiday noise.

How to Find Your Footing
The holidays are hard because there is such a massive amount of activity going on.
It can be a chore just to sort through all the events, relationships, expectations, hopes, dreams, and wishes.
So what do you do when you can’t see the forest for the trees?
You start with a houseplant.
Start with where you are. What is going on in your own environment? That includes where you live, but it also includes you. You have needs that should be met first and foremost. If not, you’ll be like a ship without an anchor, floating and bobbing closes to shore but not able to grab hold of anything stable.
You have to start with yourself. You need to build a strong foundation so that you can weather the likely storms. There are always storms on the seas, and this is especially true during the holiday season.
Can you clean up your house? Can you take time to carve out some empty space in your humble abode–and just sit in it?
And what do you actually want from the holidays? Take some time to consider what they mean to you. You could even try making a list of your priorities this holiday season. What is most important to you? Is there something you can plan right now to make sure you can experience what’s of utmost importance to you this holiday season?
The home is where the heart is. And if you don’t get your heart in the right place, how much of it will you have left to give to others?
If and When You Go Out Into the World
Let’s face it.
You’ll likely have to leave your house this holiday season. If you don’t have to, then maybe you don’t need to. It can be a beast out there this time of year. Remember, do what’s most compassionate for you.
But if you do go out, remember these things:
  1. Your value is inherent. It’s already there. Nothing anyone says or does can take it away from you.
  2. You don’t need a latest and greatest product to be happy. Latest and greatest products will always be there. It’s all marketing. Buy something when you have a real need for it–not when someone convinces you that you have a need.
  3. The people who love you love you because of who you are—not because you perform one specific action in a precise way on one or two days during the holiday season.
And there’s something else you should consider.
You’re going to have to do things that you don’t want to do. You’ll likely hang out with people who don’t make you feel all warm and bubbly. Repeat after me: “This too shall pass.”
The holiday season wants to trick you into thinking it will last forever. It doesn’t. Nothing ever does.
It all comes back to you. No approach from a man on the Internet is perfect because he’s not YOU. You are the one who determines your course in life. Only you can know what will bring you peace when the most joyous time of year has you down.
Be ruthlessly vigilant with your self-love this time of year.
In a world of weaponized marketing, your self-compassion is the greatest weapon of all.
It's all going to be OK, little elves.
It's all going to be OK, little elves.
You made it down here! You read to the end. You have accomplished something today. OK, I’m being silly, but still. Take care of yourself out there. You matter.

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Jordan Brown - Mental Health Newsletter Writer, Poet, Social Worker, and Advocate

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