The intention behind a gift far outweighs its cost.
I think I learned this in a round-about way from my mother… She has always divulged in these long pre-ambles with in-depth reasoning behind every gift’s practical function and it’s foreseen place in my daily life. It’s always so charming and heart-warming to see the depth of thought that she puts into every gift.
The same is true when my best friend or sister-in-law remark on why they thought of each item for me (“This lavender roller is supposed to help with your migraines!”). It honestly touches my heart and makes the exchange so much more meaningful.
With a year like 2020, our mental health has truly been put to the test. With that in mind, I wanted to create a gift guide that — rather than focusing on material items — would focus on the positive impact that we could have in each other’s lives. I hope that these suggestions help you and your loved ones be merrier, no matter how you celebrate during the holiday season!
(A note: At Shift, we are big proponents of supporting small local businesses — heck, we are a small business! The links in this article are meant as a starting point for our nation-wide audience, but we encourage you to use them as references while shopping locally.)
Light therapy helps to ease symptoms of seasonal affective disorder and depression, as well as increase your energy levels, and help you feel better in just a few days. You can get are straight-forward Light Therapy Lamps, and also Sunrise Lamps that imitate the sunrise to support your circadian rhythm.
Weighted blankets create a swaddling effect that serves to calm a restless mind and body. It provides comfort, security, and a calming effect for people with anxiety, PTSD, depression, and other related disorders.
Nothing is more relaxing or grounding than making time for self-care. It’s something that those battling mental health challenges often forget to do. Here are some treats to help your loved ones some treats to pamper themselves.
Fun challenge: Focusing on our five senses is a grounding technique that helps a person remain in the present moment. See if you can assemble the care package with all five 5 senses in mind!
Putting your worries and triggers in writing can help you manage your symptoms and challenge negative self-talk that’s often associated with anxiety. Here are some favourites that make journaling a breeze:
It’s popular lately for a reason! Your brain experiences relief by entering a meditative state, stress levels have the potential to be lowered and focusing on the present helps you achieve mindfulness. Don’t forget to throw in some coloured pencils or crayons!
Studies have shown that people are more confident, energetic and emotionally positive when they play! As well, they can help support connection & conversations between loved ones.
If your loved one has a passion for a certain cause, make a donation in their name! Studies have shown that when people give back, it activates regions of the brain associated with pleasure, social connection, and trust. Altruism can help to strengthen our sense of social connection, especially in times when we may be feeling rather disconnected and remote.
No matter what you choose, try to give it along with the gift of your time. There’s nothing that a person whose struggling with mental illness needs more than the time, patience, and kindness. That’s never more important than now.
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