Get Well

5 Activities To Prevent Mental Breakdowns This Holiday That are 100% Free

by Amanda Smith

We all feel the stress of work deadlines, last-minute holiday shopping, spending A LOT of time with family and friends, and being out of your day-to-day routine. It can be overwhelming to say the least. I’ve been practicing these “preventative” strategies to avoid a potential mental breakdown and they seem to be helping… so far! I wanted to share them with you in case this is just the thing you need. 

Meditation, Meditation, Meditation. 

This goes without saying and is so cliche (because it works) but meditation is one of the best ways to prevent a mental breakdown and it’s 100% free. Of course you can pay for apps or memberships with guided meditations, but I prefer Youtube, or even just being in silence meditating on my own. For me my mind is always going and can feel lost, out-of-my-body, and gone from my sense of self, so what I have found helps is to go into a dark or dimily lit room, lay flat on the ground on my back in silence. It looks a bit odd to anyone who would happen to barge in, but this grounds me so much.

Water Based Activities

This is probably the Pisces in me talking but any activity that involves submerging myself in water is so relaxing and helps to break up my day. Whether it’s a long hot shower, bubble bath, dip in the pool, or even just dancing in the rain – I feel rejuvenated. It’s almost a spiritual metaphor of washing away the anxiety, the stress, the mess, the mistakes, the mishaps, and stepping out a whole new person. The next time you have a stressful day, get into some water. Meditate there if you have to! I promise you, the other side is divine. 

Call A Loved One

If you’re someone who needs to process your emotions and thoughts out loud, do it! Call up a close friend or family member and talk. Be honest. Share all the details. Let. It. Out. It’s so therapeutic to speak out loud what you’re going through and share it with someone you love, trust and feel safe with. I can’t tell you the amount of times I needed to vent, learned something new about myself through someone else’s eyes, and discovered new emotions I never knew i had. Truly a breakthrough!

Dance Party In Your Underwear 

Okay we’ve all been here before. Whether sober or not, you can’t deny how liberating it can be to put on a good song (we suggest W.A.P) and let loose. Whether dancing is your thing, or another physical activity, just get moving. Not only will it provide a temporary escape from whatever you’re going through, but physical activity has been proven to provide our minds with endorphins. These endorphins interact with the receptors in your brain that reduce your perception of pain (wow!) So grab a big t-shirt and your most comfy undies and get to it!

Take A Break

This is last on my list as it’s not always possible for everyone, every time we are stressed. Learning how to cope and maintain our mental health is the biggest lesson of all, but when push comes to shove… to your breaking point – a break is VERY much needed. Take it from someone with two jobs and a 60 hr work week, you need a break. This doesn’t include family vacations, or a break to play hostess for friends visiting town and crashing at your place – a real break. Turn off your notifications on Slack, set up your vacation mode email signature, and escape! My favorite ways to escape: A. Ordering shitty food and watching shitty movies on my couch all day. B. Going out into nature whether that’s a hike or a beach day. C. Sleeping in till noon. 

Whatever it is that may help you prevent mental breakdowns, go for it! Remember to give back to yourself this month and stick to the boundaries you’ve set! We hope this helps! If you have any unique ways to un-wind, let us know in the comments below! Happy relaxing!

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