The Christmas and New Year period is a time of year where disconnecting from work and life is the best gift you can give yourself and your family. Many of us suffer from anxiety and stress this time of year so we need to look after our mental health. Getting off our digital devices and spending quality time with each other is a fantastic way to be refreshed after a couple of chaotic years, due to the pandemic.
Outdoor Seasonal Activities
There are so many ways to disconnect from our busy lives, particularly when we spend time outdoors this holiday season. Depending on where you live in the world, will determine the kinds of activities that are best suited to you. While most of us think of cold weather and snow at Christmas time, there are other parts of the world, such as Australia that enjoy hot days at the beach, barbecues at the park, or outdoor activities in the backyard with the kids.
For those in a suitable climate, hiking through nature trails to find some fantastic camp sites, can be a great way to disconnect and recharge. Like most outdoor activities, camping requires the use of some basic equipment. That means you’ll need to pack your tent, sleeping bag and cooking utensils along with food that can be easily prepared outdoors. Hopefully, the accessories help you get off the digital devices and really enjoy the outdoors.
There are also plenty of other, more urban outdoor activities to consider. Bike riding, for example, is a great way to explore your own neighborhoods and get some exercise at the same time. Or take a walk through your city’s Christmas markets, they’re usually set up in interesting and beautiful locations. The important thing is to spend time outdoors, in the fresh air and resist the urge to continually check your phone for messages and social media.
The Benefits of Fresh Air
Fresh air is good for your physical and mental health. Getting outside can also help you to disconnect from your digital devices if you are actively engaged in an outdoor activity. When you’re outdoors, in the fresh air, you’re taking a break from the stress of work and technology. You’re also getting some exercise, which is good for your health.
Nature has been shown to improve our health and wellbeing so, take a break this holiday season and enjoy the fresh air! Spend time with friends and family, and enjoy what nature has to offer.
Getting fresh air can do wonders for your health. Exercising outside increases energy levels due to deeper breathing in fresh oxygen from the outdoors. This can reduce blood pressure because your stress hormones are lowered. Nature has a calming effect, which can lead to better sleep and concentration.
Studies have also shown that fresh air can help improve your mood. Being outdoors in nature exposes you to sunlight, which helps the body produce serotonin, a hormone that regulates moods. So, take some time this holiday season to disconnect from digital devices and recharge.
Disconnect from Social Media
Getting off social media for the festive season can improve health and prevent anxiety. Social media encourages you to compare your life with that of others which can lead you to feel sad and unfulfilled.
Turn off the phone, log out of social media apps and enjoy time away from screens by focusing on family, friends and activities you love. You may choose to disconnect entirely for a week or two, or you could decide to limit your use for a certain amount of time each day.
Take Time for You!
During the busy holiday season, you can easily spend all your time doing activities and errands for family. Take some downtime to care for yourself by spending quality time in nature, relaxing or exercising.
It’s important you take some personal time as it will help reduce stress levels and improve mental health, setting you up for a great start to 2022.
For those that live in particularly cold climates, the holidays are a time of year when the outdoors can seem less inviting. The cold weather, dark days and over-crowded stores can make it difficult to disconnect from technology and spend more time outdoors. For these reasons it may be even more important for you to spend some time outdoors to get some sunlight. It’s important for us to get sunlight every day as it helps regulate our circadian rhythm and improve mental health. A lack of sunlight can lead to Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD), a type of depression that typically affects people during the winter months.
Taking a break from your phone is important! Many people find it difficult to take their attention away from the screen when they’re always connected online. If you have anxiety or depression you may relate to feeling overstimulated and overwhelmed. You might also identify family members who are stressed, and could benefit from the simple techniques we’ve covered. It’s important you take a break from technology and put your phone on airplane mode so you don’t get distracted by notifications, alerts or updates.
Give yourself permission to disconnect! You will have to give yourself some time off work during the holiday season if you want to avoid overwhelm this holiday season. If you’re feeling overwhelmed by the holidays approaching, or you just need some time to relax and recharge, we trust this articlehas been helpful.
We are all different and need different amounts of time to disconnect, so find what works best for you and stick to it! Holidays are a time to enjoy with family and friends, not be glued to a screen. So go out and enjoy the fresh air, sunlight and exercise! While many of us tend to overindulge this time of year, and then regret it. Why not do something for your health so you can feel good about yourself and set yourself up for an amazing 2022!