How to survive Christmas

5 Dec 2018
Rajive Patel
Rajive Patel B.Pharm
Medical Writer
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The Christmas period is here, but it’s not just Christmas Day, it’s the holiday season run-up to Christmas, it’s Christmas Eve, Boxing Day and the New Year festive season. It’s a time for family Christmas parties, Christmas presents, spending time with your loved ones and work do’s. It’s the time of year when you have to see the in law’s, but let’s not let that spoil your perfect Christmas. Here’s some top tips on surviving Christmas.

  • Having a bit of a binge on the big day is one thing, but drinking over the whole holiday is another. Alcohol might make you feel more relaxed, but is also a depressant and can cause low mood, irritability or even aggressive behaviour. Drinking consistently over long periods of time can affect your body and health. Take care of yourself and give yourself some time before having another drink, so it gives your body and especially your liver time to recover
  • Christmas can be a difficult time for a lot of people. A lot of people may be spending the festive period on their own. It can be a time full of anxiety, and with the winter season you may be suffering with seasonal affective disorder (SAD). So, unless you really want to spend Christmas on your own, you can still do something about it. Say yes to that invite, whether it’s from a family member, a friend or a neighbour. It’s a difficult time for a lot of people, especially those with mental health issues. Somebody you know may need you more than you think, especially with Covid, and the latest Omicron variant looming
  • If you are spending Christmas on your own then it’s a perfect time to help others. Instead of scrolling through pages of social media and feeling sorry for yourself, volunteer. It’s a fantastic way to bring some joy to people who are less fortunate than yourself and you’ll feel appreciated. You could help at a soup kitchen, food bank, a children’s hospital, or visit residents at a nursing home. Your local church, community organisation or council should be able to point you in the right direction
  • The festive period can be a stressful time, with work, kids, parties, presents to buy, money issues and everything else you try to cram into the week before Christmas. Start early, plan ahead and spread the cost of Christmas and presents you need to buy. Shop online, avoid those long queues, there’s an app for pretty much everything now. It will save you time, and you don’t even have to leave the comfort of your own home
  • If you’re lucky enough to be the one cooking Christmas dinner, don’t take it all on yourself. I’m pretty sure even Nigella gets the family to muck in. How else could she look so great all the time. Ask other family members to bring different parts of the meal. Maybe a dish each. Or draw straws to delegate tasks in the kitchen and get your family to set the dinner table. Buy ready made stuffing, Yorkshires or puddings. It’s only cheating if they find out
  • It’s true what they say, every family always has one. Someone who is guaranteed to go and spoil it for everyone. It wouldn’t be Christmas though without everyone would it. Christmas can be a time of dread, with relatives getting argumentative. But no family is perfect and things will be said that you don’t like. Try to keep clear of certain topics of conversation, maybe have secret Santa planned or board games to keep everyone occupied, and go easy on the drink. If you do get a bit stressed, take a few long slow deep breaths, or lock yourself in the loo, it’s a great place for a time out

One last thing to remember this Christmas, if you haven’t already. Get your jabs, wear a mask and wash your hands. Oh, and Enjoy!

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