It's OK: beat the festive blues

Wednesday 06-12-2017 - 17:06
Ymal beat the festive blues

The carols sing of joy, being merry and the most wonderful time of the year, but for some, the festive season can be difficult. 

Christmas can be a tough time for all sorts of reasons, and if your mental health is also suffering, it can be especially challenging. To see you through, we've gathered some top tips to share with you:


- Be honest — it's OK to talk about it if you’re not feeling great at this time of year. Talk to someone you trust and let them know you're not feeling 100%. Listening can also help anyone who might be having a tough time. Just letting someone know you are there can be really supportive.

- Don’t feel pressured to always feel happy. It's fine not to feel upbeat all the time even if you feel you should. Recognise your own feelings, and do what is right for you.


- Be kind to yourself, and take time to look after you. Whether that’s a hot bath or shower, taking some mindful time for yourself or exercising – anything that makes you feel better.    There’s some great self-care tips here and back in September, Maria shared her top tips on how to find hygge in the city – so explore, relax and get cosy.

- Don’t get hung up on what the Christmas holidays are supposed to be like and how you’re supposed to feel. It’s not about perfect presents and breaking the bank, so don’t set unrealistic expectations upon yourself. Try to take everything as it comes.


Mind have some great tips on how to cope around Christmas with all the different things that might affect you, from loneliness, stress and anxiety and financial troubles, to struggling with the amount of food and drink that is consumed around this time of year. They also have blogs with real stories from people who have been there.

Boots also have some really good advice for coping with stress and depression over the holidays.

Not going home for the holidays? There are other things you can do like volunteering and community get-togethers. – check out the Great Get-Together or look at volunteering opportunities in your area like charity shops or the Salvation Army. You can check out other volunteering opportuntiies in the local area on our page too. 


Remember, if you're not feeling very festive, for whatever reason, our Advice Centre is there if you need it. 

You can also contact the University Counselling and Wellbeing team.


Other useful contacts:

Student Minds:





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