Tips for dealing with stress over the holidays

By Jack Fox, M.A., Resident in Counseling

Photo by Nathan Anderson on Unsplash

We know the stress of the holidays can be a lot. Here are two simple tips to keep in mind to keep stress at bay.

1) Don’t break the bank to try and show you love or care. 

Many people try to show their family and friends how much they mean to them over the holidays with great presents. This consumerism affection can cause a lot of financial strain for families, leading to anxiety and stress in the coming months. It is important to remember that these family and friend relationships, when healthy, will remain filled with love even without having to go into debt over the holiday season. Alternatives such as homemade gifts or giving experiences with each other are often times more meaningful and heartfelt than the most expensive gift.

2) If family is bad for your mental health, don’t engage simply because you feel you have to. 

For many individuals, the holiday season is one filled with negative memories, associations, and feelings surrounding their family situation. If you fall into this category, remember that no is a complete sentence! You are not obligated or required to spend time with people who are not good for your mental health. If you have been struggling to find your voice or assertiveness, you are not alone, and hearing that it is okay to not spend the holiday with family may be what you need!

Happy Holidays from all of us at Healthy Minds Therapy!


About Jack Fox:

Jack graduated from the College of William and Mary with a B.S. in Psychology and recently finished his graduate work at Regent University with a M.A. in Clinical Mental Health Counseling. Throughout his studies, Jack has seen and worked with many clients, both adolescents and adults, struggling with depression, anxiety, post-traumatic stress disorder, adjustment issues, and even people with a desire to get to know themselves just a little bit better! The more Jack has worked with people, the more a simple truth has come to light: You are not alone!

Jack believes that success in therapy results from a combination of understanding first what is dysfunctional, then where the dysfunction comes from. Finally, changing a behavior resulting from the thoughts or emotions driving the dysfunction can result in truly powerful changes in life. He mainly uses Cognitive Behavior Therapy, EDMR, and Solution Focused Brief Therapy to help attain the goals of his clients. Through these techniques, Jack enters into relationship with his clients and gets to understand and hear their full story, providing a safe environment for vulnerability.

To learn more about Jack, visit HERE.

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