Seasonal Suggestions for Your Well-Being

two people and their dog walking on a  snowy path surrounded by trees.

As the year comes to an end, it can be a time of excitement, celebration and connection with family and friends. It can also invite heightened stress, anxiety and sadness, challenge your resolve to maintain healthy habits, or increase feelings of being overwhelmed or isolated. 

If this sounds familiar to you, please know there are many resources available to help you care for yourself.

Find help with meeting basic needs 

For many of us, financial challenges can pop up any time of the year. But at this time of the year, it can feel even more stressful. And for some in our community, financial hardships can feel overwhelming.

During challenging times, it can be difficult to know where to turn for help. MHealthy’s Resource Coach program can help find practical solutions for locating the right resources for finding food and meeting basic needs. In some cases, employees may qualify for small mini-grants to cover an urgent need or for financial assistance through the Emergency Hardship Program. 

U-M faculty, staff and students that have an immediate need also have access to the Maize and Blue Cupboard (MBC) food pantry. The MBC's mission is to ensure that no one at U-M goes without by providing healthy, nutritious, and nourishing food and the ability to prepare it for themselves or others. 

Take care of your mental and emotional health

In addition to celebrations and merriment, this time of year can also bring up a challenging mix of complex feelings. It’s common for people to experience heightened stress, anxiety, sadness, or feelings of being overwhelmed or isolated. If this sounds all-too-familiar, and you’d like to talk about how you feel and receive additional support, we’re here for you. U-M faculty, staff and their adult dependents have access to Mental Health Counseling and Consultation Services at no charge (from Michigan Medicine Office of Counseling and Workplace Resilience and the Faculty and Staff Counseling and Consultation Office).

Services and resources to support your mental and emotional health are available now (and at any time of the year). If you live outside of the State of Michigan but within the USA, you can receive mental and emotional health services from our partner ComPsych

Get a handle on holiday spending

Data shows that personal finances continue to be a leading cause of stress for many Americans. Financial stress occurs when there is uncertainty around finances, a sense of worry about the future, and a lack of security. All this can be exacerbated by holiday celebrations and  gift giving. 

If you are experiencing financial stress, you're not alone – there are many tips and resources available to help.

Discover delicious (and healthy) recipes

Are you looking for both delicious and yet healthy recipes for your holiday table? Search MHealthy's recipes and find satisfying, quick and easy recipes for this holiday season. Hundreds of recipes are available that emphasize whole grains, fruits, vegetables, beans, lean protein, low-fat dairy and healthy fats.

You can also watch this short video from MHealthy's nutrition team about intuitive eating over the holidays. 

Drink mindfully (or maybe not at all)

Alcohol could play a role at many parties and family functions this season. If you are looking to be more mindful of your drinking choices, watch this video featuring specialists from MHealthy's Alcohol Management Program (AMP) offering tips on how to drink less alcohol or not at all around the holidays. 

Sign up to also receive AMP’s “Holiday Stop and Swap” email every week through January 1. It’s full of tips and resources to help you cut down or take a break from alcohol – you choose what’s right for you. Sign up by Dec. 15.

Safeguard your family’s holiday travel 

Traveling during the holidays can be hectic. Traveling with children brings its own special challenges. This article from Child and Family Care offers sound tips to help your family’s travel plans go as smoothly as possible.

Keep moving 

Movement is good for your body, mind and mood. Taking time for a short walk or bout of physical activity can help to clear your mind and relieve stress. 

MHealthy has a variety of physical activity programs and resources, including archived virtual classes on Slack and an extensive physical activity video library. If you’re looking for an in-person option, consider joining a winter in-person physical activity class starting in January (registration opens Dec. 11!).

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