The holidays are finally upon us, and while this year might look a bit different than most, there is no reason we all can’t make the most of it. You might still be deciding whether to stay home this season or visit your family in light of the COVID-19 pandemic.
But, no matter what you decide to do, it’s important to make safety a priority. Putting your health first this year is more important than ever. So, while you might think you already know how to stay healthy and safe, it never hurts to have a few reminders. The holidays can be stressful and there is always a lot to do. So, keeping your safety in check is never a bad thing!
With that in mind, let’s look at four ways you can stay safer this holiday season, so you can make merry all winter long!
- Practice Good Hygiene
We’ve all heard the advice about washing our hands frequently throughout this pandemic. But, it’s especially important to be reminded this season. You may be out and about more, whether you’re shopping for gifts, food, or just attending events in-person.
With exposure to more people comes exposure to more germs. Making hand-washing a priority is a great way to keep yourself from getting sick, especially if you have a habit of frequently touching your face.
- Manage Your Stress
It’s easy to forget about the mental health effects of this pandemic, but it has already created problems for so many. The CDC has acknowledged the dangers of extra stress, worry, and anxiety this virus has brought to so many people. It has also caused abundant loneliness for those who haven’t been able to leave their homes and see loved ones.
The holidays are already stressful enough, but this year may be even worse. By finding ways to cope with your stress and manage it the best you can, you’ll be doing yourself a huge favor. Too much stress can cause you to experience feelings of depression. You may also start to make mistakes, and could put yourself at a greater risk of things like accidents, like falling when you’re in a store or not paying attention while driving. No one wants to have to think about hiring a personal injury attorney during the holidays, so de-stressing will help you to stay focused and calm.
- Keep Your Gatherings Small
Again, the holidays will likely look different this year, especially when it comes to family get-togethers. While there is a light at the end of the tunnel for this virus, it’s certainly not over yet.
Because of that, it’s a good idea to keep your gatherings as small as possible. If you can, limit them to the people who already live in your home. If you do still want to be with other family members, practice distancing as much as possible, and try to keep your visits short.
One way to still feel connected without getting together in-person is to take advantage of technology. While you might be sick of Zoom calls right now, they are a great way to, at the very least, see the faces of your family and friends. It’s better for everyone to remain safe by staying apart this year, so you can all gather together in-person again next year.
- Try Not to Travel
While some people won’t be able to avoid traveling this holiday season, you should call off your travel plans, if possible. That’s especially true if your plans are to go somewhere to visit family.
Traveling is risky right now, not necessarily because of the modes of transportation, but because of what can in-between.
If you’re traveling somewhere by car, chances are you’ll have to stop for bathroom breaks, food, etc. Each time you do, you run the risk of exposing yourself to the virus if other people are around. If you are traveling by plane, you’re putting yourself at risk both in the airport and on the plane, itself. While most places and businesses have mask enforcements in place, you won’t be able to make sure you’re 100% safe unless you stay home.
While some of these tips might sound a bit extreme, it’s what needs to be done right now in order for things to eventually return to normal. Next year, imagine how grateful you’ll be to be able to wrap your arms around your loved ones and share the holidays together. While this season might be disappointing for some, it’s only temporary. Keep that in mind as you take extra steps to keep yourself and the people you care about safe.
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