Due to popular demand, we are excited to be able to bring the 12 DAYS OF HOLIDAY WELL-BEING back for 2019!
While the holiday season is often filled with excitement and joy, it can also be a stressful time for families. Check out these tips for maintaining well-being for you and your family this holiday season.
DAY 1 Consider the developmental needs and abilities of your children – Have realistic expectations for what your children can handle when making holiday plans. Trying to stretch them too far can result in unnecessary stress and major meltdowns. Adjusting plans to match their unique needs will contribute to greater enjoyment for everyone.
DAY 2 Focus on connection - A sense of family and community belonging is vital to mental health and well-being. The holiday season is a great time to invest in the family and community relationships that are most important to you and your children. Connecting and celebrating with your family’s natural support system can enhance your family’s sense of joy during the holidays.
DAY 3 Leave time for rest and relaxation – Overscheduling can leave everyone in the family feeling tired and depleted. Scheduling down time helps you and your children recharge and replenish your emotional resources. This leaves everyone better equipped to manage the holiday excitement.
DAY 4 Maintain some structure - Children thrive on structure and predictability. Some flexibility is necessary to accommodate special holiday events. However, children will have a hard time coping without any of the daily structure they are accustomed to. Find ways to maintain your family’s mealtime, naptime, and bedtime routines as much as possible.
DAY 5 Be present – When spending time with your children remember to not only be physically present but emotionally and mentally present as well. Let go of multi-tasking your parental responsibilities and focus on the “here and now” with your children. This promotes greater parent-child attunement, helping children to feel truly seen and connected.
DAY 6 Have fun – Remember to make time for play and have fun with your kids! Joyfully experiencing your children strengthens parent-child relationships and helps children to foster a positive sense of self. It’s also a great way to relieve holiday stress.
DAY 7 Create & share family traditions – One way to promote a sense of belonging and family and cultural identity for children is through engagement in family traditions. The holidays are a great time to create new family traditions or pass on old and meaningful ones!
DAY 8 Remember the true meaning of the holidays – Remember to share with your children the true meaning of this holiday season as it relates to your family’s culture and beliefs. Avoid becoming consumed by the consumerism.
DAY 9 Contribution – Foster a sense of generosity and contribution for your children and family by involving them in special volunteering or giving opportunities that come with the holidays such as holiday hampers or toy drives. This can help to promote a sense of community for your children and family.
DAY 10 Balance – It is important to balance between the expectations of your loved ones and what is realistic for your family this season. Often expectations to be involved in several different activities is expected, however, it is important for you and your family to balance between maintaining mental wellness and meeting expectations.
DAY 11 Reach out for support – For many, this time of year can be difficult and filled with a sense of loneliness and isolation. If you or your family needs support, please feel free to review this mental health resource guide for Winnipeg: https://mbwpg.cmha.ca/wp-content/uploads/2016/03/CMHA-Guide-WEB-Ed-22-Aug-2018.pdf.
DAY 12 Reflect on the past year – The holiday season is a perfect time to reflect on the past year, what you and your family have accomplished and how you and your family would like to invest your time, talents, and resources in the new year. Celebrating your family’s successes and reminiscing about special memories promotes well-being.
We wish a wonderful holiday season and the best of 2020! From the KIDTHINK team.