Hello and welcome to another blog post, we hope you have been keeping great care of yourselves. July marks the start of the long-awaited school summer holidays. For some parents and guardians, you may be looking forward to the holidays as it allows you to spend extended quality time with your children. For others you may look at the holidays with anticipation as you wonder how are you going to make it through? How are you going to keep your child entertained for 6 whole weeks? Some of you may even worry about their safety during the holidays. It is completely normal to feel a mixture of emotions. Whatever you are feeling, remember our founder’s motto…’Be Kind to Yourself’. We understand the holidays can be a full-on time, in this post we will be tackling ways to maintain your mental health and self-care during the holidays.
A Moment to Reflect Over the Year
Take a minute to acknowledge that you have made it through the academic year. There were probably times where you may have felt extremely overwhelmed and questioned whether you were doing a good enough job as a parent/carer, yet you have made it to the end of the school year. Take a moment to give yourself a pat on the back and your child too. It is so important to be kind to yourself. Acknowledging when we have achieved something (even if we think it is small) is one way that we can practice this, so well done you!
How am I feeling about the summer holidays?
In order to be conscious with our thoughts we need to take time out to evaluate what may actually be going on in our minds. Take a moment to ask yourself how are you feeling about the summer holidays? What words come to mind? Excited, relieved, hopeful, overwhelmed, anxious may just be a few words that could resonate with you. Being present with your emotions and thoughts will help you to identify if you are feeling generally overall positive or negative, we can then try our best to adjust moving forward if need be.
Some ways to maintain your mental health throughout the holidays
Plan in advance
Sometimes just a little preparation can prevent feelings the stress in a situation. Plan activities that you may be able to do with your child in advance. This may be a play date with another parent, a family day out for an event, a movie night at home or even a creative arts and crafts day! Having a plan can help us to feel less anxious. Even just minimal planning can have a huge effect on your mental health. Feel free to give this a go if you have not already.
Sign up for local activities
Local authorities usually have events and clubs running throughout the holidays for different age groups. Such as summer camps for various ages, park meet ups, different baby groups. This is a great way to integrate with your community and being social with others. If you have access to the internet, you can search on your local authorities’ website and find out what events and activities they have going on. If you do not have access to the internet you can pop into your local library as they are likely to know what activities your borough is running and may be able to help you sign up.
Being outside in nature and getting fresh air can really help improve your mental health. Why not plan daily walks with your child to help get you outside on a daily basis? Or plan some activities outside such as a group sports day, a picnic with friends, or even a day at the beach!
Talk to someone
If you do feel the holidays are getting on top of you, it is much better to reach out and speak to someone. Sometimes just an informal chat with a friend or loved one can help you to offload some of the emotions you may be feeling. However, if you feel that you may be getting too overwhelmed and your mental health it beginning to get on top of you, then you may want to consider speaking to a professional. There is no shame in reaching out and asking for help. We will leave useful links down below if this is something you may want to consider. We also have our trusted, qualified Bennu therapists who would be more than happy to be part of this healing journey with you, you can get in touch with us here.
Be Kind to Yourself
Although, for some the 6 weeks holidays fly by, for others it can be a very challenging time. Remember to always ‘Be Kind to Yourself’ throughout this time. Take a breather when you need one and when you can. Speak to yourself kindly. We also have a guided meditation led by our founder all about being kind to yourself which you can find here.
We hope this post has been useful. Let us know in the comments below and over on social media. Remember to be kind to yourself, the majority of parent/carers are doing the best job that they can. We wish you a lovely summer holiday.
Take great care of yourself
Useful Links For Mental Health
Emergency Mental Health Help
You call UK emergency services by dialling 999