Tips to keep on top of anxiety and depression during the busy festive season

For many of us, the thought of heading into a new year, with so much unresolved from the previous year, is enough to induce a mild panic. The fact is, anxiety doesn’t discriminate and can affect any one, any age, at any point in time – with the effects ranging from mild nervousness to extreme levels of panic and fear.

With January 1st fast approaching, it’s the perfect time to reflect on the year behind us and try to identify why you may not be feeling entirely happy about the festive season. If just reflecting on the year behind is too much for you, then draw a line in the sand and look forward to the new year as being a fresh start for you. Grief, financial stress, personal or family health, work-related pressures and family challenges are there for so many of us but it’s important that they don’t overburden you. If you are dealing with such issues you may need some help to talk about them with a health professional.

There is a lot of chatter around about ‘mindfulness’ which, simply put, means being in the moment. A good way to practice mindfulness is when you’re brushing your teeth. It’s a seemingly simple task that we do every day, but how often have you only thought about brushing your teeth while you’re brushing your teeth? For most of us, never is the answer. Whilst adapted from meditation, mindfulness is a psychological process that enables people to truly bring their attention back to whatever they are doing in that moment. So, for people struggling with anxiety, it’s a wonderful tool to help reduce your stress symptoms and make space to be able to tap into your coping mechanisms. It sounds easy enough and the more you practice it the better you become at bringing yourself back to the moment and being truly present.

Some other tips to keep in your anxiety-relieving tool kit are deep-breathing techniques, more water, less alcohol, regular exercise, healthy food and sleep! When used in isolation, these tools can have an immediate calming effect on the brain, so imagine the potential when they are all used simultaneously. There are also plenty of meditation classes and applications out there, so do yourself a favour and start some form of meditation each day.

If you enjoy outdoor therapies, get out of the house and enjoy a walk in amongst nature, go for a dip in the ocean, and feel the sand beneath your toes. It’s incredibly grounding and refreshing. The other thing about fresh air and using up your energy outdoors, is the better sleep you will receive each night.

And if you’re looking for a fun and therapeutic indoor therapy that you can even do with little people, grab a colouring in book, try your hand at jewellery making, dance to your favourite tunes or give yoga a go. You’ll find some great online resources for all of these activities or sign up to a class where you can meet new people and enjoy an activity as part of a community or group.

Sydney TMS is the leading provider of Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS) therapy in New South Wales. Offering a drug-free alternative for depression treatment, TMS offers a pain-free and medicine-free solution via a non-invasive procedure that improves symptoms of depression through the use of magnetic fields that stimulate nerve cells. If you have tried anti-depressants and feel that they aren’t working for you, give us a call so we can fill you in on TMS therapy for depression.