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Are you stressed about the New Year? Worried about what it's going to be like? New responsibilities at work and at home? Starting university? Already have debt? Worried about expenses? Perhaps you’ve started a new job? Or going back to the same job?

In the beginning of the year most people talk about New Year resolutions, which can put a lot of pressure on an individual to stick to them. Some people worry about the uncertainty of an entire New Year whilst others worry about change in their environment, relationships, economy, etc. All this worrying can lead to a lot of Stress and Anxiety. The New Year may also see new responsibilities such as a new job, new relationships, or even taking your child to school for the first time.

Here are five ways to help you tackle New Year Anxiety and Stress:

1. Try physical activity: When you’re nervous, angry, or upset, release the pressure through exercise or physical activity. Running walking, playing tennis or working in your garden are just some of the activities you might try. Physical exercise will relieve that ‘uptight’ feeling and help relax you. Remember, your body and your mind work together.

2. Share your stress: It helps to talk to someone about your concerns or worries. Perhaps a friend, family member, teacher, or counsellor can help you see your problem in a different light. If you feel your problem is serious, you might seek help from a psychologist, psychiatrist, social worker, or other mental health professionals. Knowing when to ask for help may avoid more serious problems later on.

3. Knowing your limits: Create a schedule or routine that gives you enough time each day to rest, get enough sleep and do things you enjoy. Don’t take on too many commitments.

4. Take care of yourself: Get enough rest and eat well. If you are irritable and tense from lack of sleep or if you are not eating correctly, you will have less ability to deal with stressful situations. If stress repeatedly keeps you from sleeping, you should ask your doctor for help or try simple stress management techniques.

5. Make time for fun: Schedule time for both: work and recreation. Doing something you enjoy can be just as important to your well-being at work; you need a break from your daily routine to just relax and have fun.

SADAG is able to provide free telephonic support, counselling and referrals to appropriate mental health care resources nationwide. Call 0800 70 80 90 to speak to a counsellor 7 days a week, every day of the year, from 8am - 8pm or visit www.sadag.org for more info.