Make Your Mental Heath a Priority this Holiday Season


Article Contributed by
Office of the Chautauqua County Executive

The National Alliance of Mental Illness (NAMI) says many people can find family gatherings, parties and other social events overwhelming. Others may feel deep sadness or loneliness during the holidays following the loss of a loved one, divorce or separation from family and friends. While the holidays can be a stressful time for anyone, they can be particularly difficult for people living with mental illness as the season can amplify a range of emotions and stresses.

  • Here are some tips adapted from the Cleveland Clinic to help you with holiday stressors.
  • Try something new like a food you haven’t tried before or an activity you have not participated in.
  • Spend time with people who care about you.
  • Take a vacation with a family member or friend.
  • Volunteer your time to help others. Spending time helping others can help you feel less isolated.
  • If you are religious, take time to reflect on the spiritual significance of the season.
  • Try to appreciate the good things you have now instead of focusing on the past or negative things.
  • Stay active. Go outdoors for some fresh air. Go for a walk.
  • Get help if you need it. Don’t be embarrassed to ask for help at this time or any time of the year.

If your feelings are too much to overcome by yourself or if you feel like a friend or a loved one is experiencing a difficult time and needs help, the Chautauqua County Crisis Hotline Number is available at 1-800-724-0461. Always, if you are experiencing an immediate emergency, dial 911.