Summer in Australia can be wonderful! Here in Perth, Western Australia, the weather has been hot! Summer means “holidays” – and enjoying some free time away from work, university or school.

Holidays can provide a great break from anxiety and stress. Stress and anxiety can affect our body systems – decrease the ability to fight infection, affect digestion, decrease mental alertness and mood, and increase blood pressure. You may not sleep so well, which then affects the following day.

According to research by Roy Morgan in January – June 2020 (1), 8.5 million Australians aged 14+ (40.5%) reported suffering from a mental health condition during April – June 2020, compared to 7.7 million (37.7%) pre-lockdown in January – March 2020, an increase of approximately 800,000 people.

Of course the events of 2020 have raised concerns (including noticeable anxiety, stress and even depression for some people). However, with COVID vaccines now starting to becoming available, and the numbers of cases falling in Australia, I have listed some points below to assist in spending the holidays in a positive frame of mind and making the best use of this time:-

1. Appreciate what you have

Be grateful for the people in your life, and the activities that you are doing if you are able to be together this holiday season. Be ‘present’ with your children, spouse and friends (even if this is via video-conferencing apps), and ensure that you get the most out of whatever you are doing while on holiday.

A major source of stress could be if our loved ones or close friends are overseas, and cannot be with us at holiday season. This is especially so if we are used to spending holidays together. Perhaps they are working overseas, or cannot get a flight back to home due to the current COVID-19 situation. Perhaps we are the ones stuck overseas, and cannot return home for the holidays. If this is the case, we may be able to use video conferencing apps to “see” loved ones and speak to them, even open gifts “together”.

2. Schedule in some quiet time every day

We are all so busy – mobile phones, work, school runs, taking children to after school or weekend activities…. A holiday is a great time to relax and unwind. Some people come back from their holidays more exhausted than before they left, and then have to go back to their normal work routine without a true ‘break’. You may wish to reserve some time each day to meditate, simply lie on the beach, or relax in the shade on a sun lounger….

3. Schedule busy time everyday

To provide contrast in your day, it is great to spend some time in activity – sightseeing (walking or cycling), maybe climbing or even dancing! All provide exercise which may help the body’s immune system (2) by flushing bacteria out of the lungs, by making antibodies and white blood cells circulate more rapidly, by raising the body temperature, and by slowing the release of stress hormones.

4. Enjoy yourself

Make sure that you are doing things that you enjoy.

5. Be positive

Our words are powerful and can create or destroy the mood of a situation. When we give voice to our worries, dislikes and negativity we are literally enhancing that feeling for ourselves and everyone around us. Is that what you really want?

Try keeping your words and commentary on what you love, appreciate or enjoy in your present moment. A steady stream of positive comments lifts you up and everyone else. You will be creating the joy and peace that you hope for in the holidays. Do your best not to complain and instead seek to lift yourself (and those around you) up. It’ll make your holiday experience so much better and enjoyable.

This is also important if something “goes wrong” – transport delay, computer glitch, accommodation double booked, etc. Make a decision to approach this in a positive way. One of my friends has said “once you have travelled a lot, you experience most of what could wrong, and you know you can survive it by staying calm and positive”.

6. Decide what you want to do with your time

Think – what do YOU want to do with the time? You may have other people to consider, e.g., family members or friends, and of course you will need to consider their wishes in where to visit and what to do if you are planning a trip. However – be careful to also consider your own list of activities.

References

(1) Mental Health conditions – Anxiety and Depression increased rapidly during lockdown link

(2) Exercise and immunity link


If you feel that you would like to improve your life, please feel free to contact me at Sunset Coast Hypnotherapy on 0403 932311, or email sunsetcoasthyp@gmail.com for a free phone consultation.

Hypnotherapy can be especially useful for helping you:-

  • look differently at events in your past
  • practice positive self-talk
  • concentrate on the present (rather than worrying about the past and future)
  • motivate yourself towards your goals.

We can discuss your specific requirements, and there is absolutely no obligation to proceed with hypnotherapy unless you choose to do so.


© Lisa Billingham, 2020

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