How to Cope During the Summer Months with a Mental Illness

Summer is a great time for family gatherings, and holidays. However people with mental illness might feel overwhelmed or isolated in the summer months for a lot of different reasons. We know that fireworks can happen a lot during the summer as well as family gatherings where you might feel like you want to hide. Here are ways to help you cope during the Summer months with a mental illness:

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  1. Family and Friends: Speaking with your family and friends while being up front and honest may be helpful. Your needs are important. Letting them know what is going on could make you feel better and allow them to adjust to make you more comfortable.
  2. Multiple Plans: Structure can help you manage the unrest caused by summer holidays and gatherings. Watch a movie or listen to music during the height of the fireworks, wear headphones if necessary. Return inside and restructure your mind, do a little deep breathing, and focus elsewhere when you feel yourself beginning to spiral.
  3. Celebrate Summer Your Way: If you would rather not go to a fireworks display or BBQ with an excess of food and alcohol, then suggest a different way of celebrating. Ask your family or friends to go on a hike or take a trip to the beach to go swimming. Create your own traditions, it is Independence Day after all. No one says you have to observe the day in one way or another in particular.
  4. Set Time to Leave: Would you like to attend someone’s party, but not for an all-nighter or want to escape prior to certain escapades begin? Simple. Choose a time to depart, and follow-through. Even let them know ahead of time that you’ll only be stopping by for a short period. Then, stick to that time. Maybe make an agreement with yourself on what you’ll be doing after you leave, so you’ll be more likely to keep the deal you have with yourself.
  5. Choose YOU: Ultimately, you need to prioritize yourself. Being selfish is okay in some instances. Your friends and family will understand, and you need to make choices that support your mental health. Everyone will still have a good time. This point may be difficult at first, but it is imperative for handling situations with a mental illness.

We, at Thrive Counseling, are happy to help you discover more coping mechanisms and support you through difficult times. Contact us today.