Athena Bean, the 2019 Best of Brown County winner for Best Therapist/Counselor, is offering advice on how to have a happy healthy holiday season, and how not to allow anxiety the number one problem being presented in therapy by people- ruin your holidays.

 

Tis the season to be thankful and jolly and here’s your how-to guide to the best holiday season ever:

 

Bean advises we’re all on different levels mentally, we aren’t all in the same place celebrating the holidays, having the same expectations for everyone isn’t realistic, don’t set expectations too high for everyone

 

Plan to alleviate any stress that keeps you from enjoying the holidays. Try and do some things beforehand. Think about what needs to be done.

 

Cuddling up with holiday movies and a blanket is delightful. However, if you’re not going home for the holidays, volunteer. Which always brings a loving and joyous feeling at Thanksgiving and Christmas — make some new traditions.

 

Set a budget for everything that has to do with the holidays, not just your gifts and decorations. Include travel expenses, that outfit, extra food and all things holiday preparation.

 

Be mindful, cognizant of what’s going on around you to benefit your health. How do you feel, pay attention to your body? “The more we understand ourselves the better we are,” Bean said. “For example, when eating, are people overeating to the point of being full - being mindful is key.”

 

Take a vacation from your tech world. People are bombarded by stimuli (phones, tablets, video games, movies) moving pictures and technology all day long.

“This amps up anxiety,” Bean said.

 

In Beans’ 28 years of working in therapy, she realizes everyone has issues to be resolved in life. “As long as there are families, I’ll always have a job,” Bean joked.

 

A teacher for many years of all ages before becoming a counselor, voted best in Brown County in the Beauty & Health category for counseling and therapy; Athena Bean has heard the issues of our community and advised as such. Where therapy was once taboo, it’s the new Mercedes of mental health. Being mindful to create your happiness is important this holiday season, Bean said.