Being so far away from home can make travel assignments difficult and it is especially rough during the holidays. Knowing that you’re separated from friends and family while they gather and celebrate the holidays can take a toll on your mental health. Here are some tips to help stave off those holiday blues, no matter what you celebrate.

Stay virtually connected

We’ll start with an obvious one. If there’s one silver lining to glean from the pandemic, it’s that it taught us how to connect to loved ones remotely. It also taught just how important it is, revealing the positive impact a simple Zoom call can make.  Whether you’re having a simple conversation with friends and family or participating in remote activities like Kahoot or Jackbox, scheduling a virtual call can do wonders in providing a feeling of social comfort.

Explore your area’s holiday activities

Whether you’re in a city or a small town, it’s almost a given that there will be holiday festivities to participate in. Whether it’s a show at the local theatre or a holiday-themed pub crawl, research the area you’re on assignment in and see if anything strikes your fancy! In a COVID-altered world, however, do make sure you’re being safe and taking precautions if you plan on participating in any public events.

Put effort into self-care

As mental health becomes less of a stigma to discuss in our culture, so too does the concept of self-care. Nothing can help calm an anxious or lonely mind like putting some care into your own well being. Whether that means you allow yourself that bit of junk food that you’re craving or spending your day off on the couch binging Netflix, it is incredibly important to allow yourself to do things that make you feel grounded and happy. No excuses!

Don’t skip out on traditions just because you’re away

Missing out on holiday traditions can add to the homesickness you may be feeling on assignment. A simple remedy is to proxy those traditions for yourself! Do you get Chinese takeout on Christmas Eve with the family? Order some! Is there a holiday movie you watch with the family every year? Give it a watch! It may seem counterintuitive and that it would make you pine for home even more, but partaking in seasonal activities that you’re used to can bring a sense of normalcy and nostalgic pleasure.

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