Holiday Mental Health

Our Trauma, Stress, Resilience team has compiled a list of some of their favorite resources for mental health during the holidays! This list is being updated and contributed to on an ongoing basis. 


Feeling Lonely During the Holidays? You’re Not Alone


The Little Book of Hygge: Danish Secrets to Happy Living (The Happiness Institute Series) by Meik Wiking -- Why are Danes the happiest people in the world? The answer, says Meik Wiking, CEO of the Happiness Research Institute in Copenhagen, is Hygge. Loosely translated, Hygge―pronounced Hoo-ga―is a sense of comfort, togetherness, and well-being. "Hygge is about an atmosphere and an experience," Wiking explains. "It is about being with the people we love. A feeling of home. A feeling that we are safe." Hygge is the sensation you get when you’re cuddled up on a sofa, in cozy socks under a soft throw, during a storm. It’s that feeling when you’re sharing comfort food and easy conversation with loved ones at a candlelit table. It is the warmth of morning light shining just right on a crisp blue-sky day. The Little Book of Hygge introduces you to this cornerstone of Danish life, and offers advice and ideas on incorporating it into your own life.


Soften Soothe Allow with Chris Germer, Ph.D. Dr. Germer is a clinical psychologist, meditation practitioner, author, and teacher of mindfulness and compassion in psychotherapy and everyday life. He is also Co-developer of the Mindful Self-Compassion training program, along with Kristin Neff.


Holiday Survival Tips and Tricks -- "It’s that time of year again — the holidays are upon us! We all want that to mean family, parties, and good cheer. But what if that isn’t working out for you? What if you have trouble getting along with your family or you have trouble navigating drinking at holiday parties? Join us as Dr. Nicole Washington helps us out with some quick hints and tips for surviving the holiday season"

Breathing Exercises:

Focused Breathing -- This exercise is taken from the evidence-based therapy approach Skills Training in Affect and Interpersonal Regulation (STAIR) for individuals currently experiencing distress from trauma. 

Mindful Breathing -- This script is taken from the article Whole Health for Pain and Suffering: An Integrative Approach written by Shilagh Mirgain, PhD, for UW Cultivating Well-Being: A Neuroscientific Approach.