How to stay connected with people during the holidays

Published: Nov. 20, 2020 at 11:28 PM EST
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SOUTH BEND, Ind. (WNDU) - Many people were looking forward to seeing family, friends and loved ones over Thanksgiving.

The pandemic, however, has forced some people to cancel their plans.

Since social connection is key to our mental health, professionals suggested some ways you can still stay connected this year.

“We are going to have to be really creative in figuring out ways to maintain that connection,” said John Horsley, who is Vice President of Adult & Addiction Services at Oaklawn.

“So I think creating it together helps build the socialization and gives excitement to something new. Learning how to use Zoom for some breakout sessions, social times, that type of thing. And really taking the opportunity to say that if I am in this house, how am I still going to be thankful? When we give thanksgiving it actually releases those feel-good hormones in our brain,” said therapist and life purpose coach Marla Godette.

Mental health professionals also suggested reaching out to those who may not have family around.

For example, leave a basket on someone’s porch; write a card; or make a call.

“We have seen upticks in suicide, upticks in heroin overdose and upticks in mental health problems. Again, the way to mitigate that is through connection. So making an extra effort to connect to people is really what we need to do,” Horsley said.

“This is what this has taught us to to create opportunities where we can do more for others,” Godette said.

If you are personally feeling down, you are not alone. There is help out there for you.

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