Christmas is meant to be a happy time where friends and family share the magic and wonder of the holiday. However, for a lot of people, it can be an extremely emotional and stressful time of year. And it is important you take extra care of yourself during the holidays – particularly if you can feel yourself becoming overwhelmed by it all.


In order to keep your health in check, take note of the following five practical tips to ensure your emotions don’t get out of hand:


1. Don’t assume things will be the same this year

As families grow and change so too does the way you celebrate Christmas. If you can’t go home this year, or family are away, try to think of other ways to celebrate the day. It can be easy to let yourself become worked up if it seems like traditions you’ve held on to for so long as starting to slip away, but look at it as a new tradition.


2.  Say no

If you can’t face going to someone’s house for dinner just say no. No matter what others may tell you or what you have done in previous years, you are not obliged to eat dinner at anyone’s house. Organise to visit the day after or before the New Year – the last thing they’ll want is you getting stressed about a dinner.


3. Stay healthy

It is important you don’t over-indulge in sweets or chocolates or completely abandon your healthy regime. Your body and mental health won’t benefit from it and you’ll only feel worse. Remember to eat lots of fruit and vegetables and enjoy plenty of exercise during the festive break – you’ll feel better for it.


4. Take some time out

Get out of the house for a walk if things start to heat up or your emotions get too much, and try to find 15 minutes every day just for you. Sitting in a quiet room, away from distractions take the time to clear your mind, concentrate on your breathing embrace an inner calm.


5. Talk to someone

Never keep your emotions hidden – you don’t have to feel automatically happy just because it’s Christmas. Talk to a family member friend or seek professional help if you think you will benefit from it. Never ever feel like you have to deal with it on your own.


If you want to talk to someone in confidence, contact Aware on 1890 303 302 .