The festive season is one of the busiest times of the year, and it can be daunting for those living with a mental health condition. It's okay to be nervous about the weeks ahead and there are many things you can do to look after your wellbeing during this time.
Kirsty, Jessica and Anjali are three of our charity-funded Peer Support Workers. They use their lived experience of mental health issues to support young people in our Mental Health Service and they’ve put together their top tips for looking after your mental wellbeing during the festive season:
- Listen to your needs and check in with yourself. Try to show yourself some compassion
- It’s okay to take breaks or have some alone time if you need to
- There is no right or wrong way to feel at this time – some people love the festive period and find it exciting, others find it can bring up difficult emotions and can be really challenging. Whatever you feel, know it’s valid
- Try to communicate your needs at this time of year to those around you. If this isn’t a possibility, reach out for external support – there is always someone to talk to.
- Remember, if this is hard, the festive period is temporary and will pass
- Try not to compare yourself too much to others, you can only do what you can, and everyone has different circumstances. How people present doesn’t always reveal the whole story
If you’re struggling, there are many places you can go for support:
- Kooth.com offers free online counselling for young people in Birmingham
- Mind.org have lots of resources to help support your mental wellbeing and a 24/7 helpline on 0121 262 3555
- beateatingdisorders.org have a one-to-one web chat as well as resources around coping with an eating disorder at Christmas
- Our Pause Hubs offers drop-in sessions if you are under 25 and have a Birmingham based GP with no booking required. They are open right up to Friday 23 December, then again in the week between Christmas and New Year and finally back to normal on Tuesday 3 January. Visit their webpage for full opening times.
Find out more about the Peer Support Worker programme on our website.