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Mental Health Monday: The importance of setting boundaries during the holidays

Experts say the holidays can severely trigger "social burn-out."

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — For many—the holiday season is a time to celebrate with family. 

However, this time of year can also affect your mental health. Everything from gift-giving, to traveling, to deciding which family members to see can really begin to add up and cause stress.

It is essential to put yourself first over the next month. You could find yourself getting easily agitated with your loved ones or experiencing rapid mood changes. 

Experts say the holidays can severely trigger "social burn-out."

"I've seen clients that say they enjoyed the isolation part of COVID," Tiffany Harris with Transcend Counseling Services said. "Trying to readjust to [socializing], especially during the holidays, when there's so much expectation." 

Experts say the best way to protect your mental health is to set boundaries. Recognizing when you've reached your limits and not being afraid to say "no" is beneficial.  

If feelings of depression or sadness arise—it's okay to seek help. 

The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline is available 24 hours a day at 1-800-273-8255. People can also reach out to the Mental Health Association of East Tennessee Monday through Friday, 8:30 a.m. through 5 p.m., at 865-584-9125.

A list of mental health resources is also available here. Any of the phone numbers and links on that page will lead you to people who want to help.

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