Mental health & The Holidays: 5 tips for busy professionals

Sarah Wall

Mental Health & the holidays 5 tips for busy professionals

There’s nothing like the festive period for lots of fun and merriment, but for many, they can be particularly stressful! Working and juggling a festive family diary and shopping demands takes its toll on your mental health. Understanding the challenges you face during this time is the first step to managing holiday stress. Here are our Five Mental health tips for busy professionals during the holidays:


Setting realistic expectations is key to dealing with stress. Reevaluate your goals for the season, and admit that you can’t accomplish everything. Striking a balance between work and personal life is important, and both are equally important.

Maintaining mental health also means setting boundaries. Communicating with colleagues and family about time constraints, setting realistic expectations, and saying no when necessary are all part of it. We know it’s hard, but don’t overpromise in fear of disappointing people. Be realistic about what you can accomplish without feeling like you’re splitting yourself; don’t aim to cram too much in!

Mental health tips for the Holidays


As the digital age intensifies, so does our subconscious reliance on technology. While difficult, planning parts of your day for a digital detox is a great way to unwind during the holidays.A break from emails (work or otherwise), Whatsapp groups (that are jam-packed during the holiday season) and other communication allows for true relaxation.

If you are watching a movie or TV, put your phone in another room. It’s so easy to get sucked in. You can also channel your focus by reading, drawing/painting, or doing puzzles or legos, since they require more concentration.

Mental health tips for the Holidays


The holiday season is a time when social media can inadvertently fuel feelings of inadequacy. Even though we know people only post the best bits of their holiday celebrations, the curated perfection displayed on social platforms may set unrealistic expectations, leading to stress and subconscious comparisons.

It is easy to lose sight of reality when you are constantly surrounded by idyllic holiday moments. Keep your mental health in check by taking breaks from social media. Be mindful of how it affects your emotions and focus on being present in your own experiences.

Instead of succumbing to the pressure of an idealized holiday, prioritize authenticity. Engage in activities that bring you joy, and unfollow accounts that trigger negativity. Christmas is about meaningful connections, not conforming to external expectations. You can have a healthier and more enjoyable holiday season by managing your social media exposure.

Mental health tips for the Holidays


Take a moment to reflect on your achievements throughout the year. Celebrate your success and acknowledge your hard work. Practicing self-appreciation and cultivating a positive mindset will certainly boost your mental resilience during the holidays.

You might find it hard to do this, so make a list of your key achievements, both personal and professional, and keep it handy for those times when you feel overwhelmed.


Don’t hesitate to get professional help if the stress gets too much. It’s essential to normalize the idea of reaching out to mental health professionals for guidance and support. There are a lot of resources out there that can help you. This link will take you to a directory for mental health helplines across the globe: 

It’s also important to have a support system. Speaking to friends, family, or colleagues about your stresses provides an emotional outlet and can alleviate the burden, both for you and for them!

In conclusion, as you navigate the holiday season, be sure to take care of yourself and we hope that our mental health tips for busy professionals during the holidays, as helped you in some way. It’s important to set realistic expectations, take care of yourself, set boundaries, and build a support system. Reflect on your achievements, unplug when necessary, and don’t hesitate to seek professional help if needed.

From everyone at Darwin, we wish you a happy and healthy holiday season filled with moments of joy and relaxation.

If you’re looking to plan for the year ahead, and are keen to gather some career or hiring advice, our consultants are on hand to help.