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The Villanovan

Mental Health During the Holidays

It’s officially the holiday season. Students have decorated their dorms for the holidays. Many put up festive lights and decorated trees to make their room feel more festive. Study music has transitioned to holiday classics. However, before counting down the days before the holidays, students are counting down the days before finals.

The school year can be stressful for students, and that can have a negative toll on one’s mental health. This Winter Break, it is important for students to relax and have some downtime with family and friends. The free time can help students recharge before next semester and focus on their well-being. Below, one will find holiday activities that they can do over break to help slow down and focus on mental health.

Watch a Holiday Movie:

There is no better way to relax than sitting on the couch and watching TV. This Winter Break, put on your cozy holiday pajamas, make some popcorn, get your hot chocolate with marshmallows and whipped cream and put on your favorite holiday movie. There are endless classics such as Elf, The Polar Express, The Grinch and Home Alone 2. These movies never get old, and you can watch them with family, friends or even your dog.

Bake Holiday Cookies:

If you don’t have a kitchen at school, and you love to bake, take advantage of your kitchen at home and make some holiday cookies. Taking time to make an easy dough recipe from scratch is a great way to impress your family and friends. Also, baking is a fun activity that can help distract you from anxious thoughts. You can make sugar or chocolate chip cookies, or if you want to get more festive, make holiday classics such as gingerbread and peppermint cookies.

Decorate a Gingerbread House: 

Decorating a gingerbread house is a great way to de-stress. It’s almost like doing an art project or putting together a puzzle. Focusing on the little details of the gingerbread house can help distract you from the stressors of everyday life.

Ice Skating and Skiing:

At school, it can be easy to spend hours in the library. Also, with daylight savings, it becomes a challenge to spend time outside. Even if you live somewhere cold, spend time outdoors. You can go ice skating or go skiing with your family or friends. If your friends ski and you live close to a ski mountain, take a day trip with your friends. This trip will allow you to catch up with them and hear about their semester. When driving to the ski mountain, make sure to play some holiday music. Ice skating is another great way to help distract your mind and spend time outdoors. Ice skating demands a lot of concentration, which is why it can be a great outlet if you need a fun activity.

Go Holiday Shopping:

If you did not have time to do your holiday shopping at school, going home for break is a great time to get your holiday shopping done. Going to stores and looking for the perfect gift for family and friends is a great way to spend your time.

Wrap Presents:

Once you get all your presents, spending time wrapping them with the perfect wrapping paper or festive bag can be another great creative outlet. Taking time to wrap a present for someone and picturing them opening the gift can bring so much happiness. Wrapping presents can help boost your mood and allow you to think about the excitement of the holiday.

Spend Time with Family and Friends:

This holiday season, find some time to spend with those you love. Surrounding yourself with family and friends can significantly help boost your mood and better your mental health.

After finals are over, many students have a sense of relief. However, although the semester is done, many students still deal with anxiety about their grades for final tests or papers. This Winter Break, it is important for students to relax and have downtime to spend with family and friends. If you find yourself dealing with a lot of anxiety, take some time to try some of these festive activities. They will help get you into the holiday spirit and allow you to focus on your well-being.

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