Not So Jolly? Prioritize Mental Health During the Holiday Season

Not feeling jolly is more common than you think! The stigma around mental health has largely fallen away in recent years, but the connection between financial wellness and mental health is much less discussed.

Our community is prone to experience mental, financial, and social pressure especially during the holiday season. So what is mental health and financial wellness? Let’s define them.


Mental Health: the state of an individual concerning their psychological, social, and emotional well-being.

Financial Wellness: a measure of your ability to manage bills, expenses, and debt. It also includes the ability to anticipate financial emergencies and establish plans for long-term financial goals.

Financial wellness, if not managed, can impact all other forms of wellness, particularly mental health.

B.E.S.T Approach

Global uncertainty, unpredictable markets, and inflation have everyone more worried and stressed over their finances this holiday season. This kind of stress is linked to increased levels of depression, anxiety, and isolation.

These strains are particularly sensitive for those of us who experience forms of mental illness and chronic stress. The National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI)’s report that 64% of people report that the holiday season makes their mental health conditions worse. Not to mention the unrealistic expectations to join social gatherings, travel, and gift-giving, which only contribute to this figure.

To help offset financial pressures and increase levels of wellness during this busy holiday season, we suggest following our B.E.S.T. approach:

  1. Boundaries | Set boundaries, meaning you limit the number of gifts you buy and create a budget that aligns with what you can afford. Furthermore, focus on essentials, do not cut back here to afford
  2. Experiences | Change the dynamic! Holidays have evolved to center around spending money which creates a distinct sting when we are experiencing financial stress. Instead, think of affordable things to build memories like hosting a potluck. Get creative!
  3. Savings | This topic should always and forever be at the top of your list. Save, save, save! Creating a savings plan and setting up several savings accounts are great steps. By targeting savings goals and placing money away for holiday spending you remove a bulk of the financial stress come time for the holiday season.
    • Take advantage of our AutoSave feature which allows you to automate your savings. Let AutoSave do the work!
  4. Time | Take time for yourself! Put together a plan for your resolutions for next year. Indulge in self-care. Meditate. Exercise. The possibilities are endless, and all revolve around you.

One key part to creating financial freedom, security, and wellness is getting #FinanciallyLIT. Financial Literacy is the knowledge and training on how to manage your personal finances, such as creating a budget, investing, saving, buying a house, starting a business, and much more. Take a moment and supercharge your #FinancialLiteracy with our free courses!

Take one small step and start to control your finances today—it can have a huge impact on your overall mental and financial health. This festive season is a great time to build better habits and confront financial stress using the B.E.S.T. approach. We hope these tips will help you keep calm when the holiday chaos starts to kick in.

OneUnited Bank

OneUnited Bank, the nation’s largest Black-owned bank and FDIC insured, understands we have to focus on money and technology to close the racial wealth gap. With your support, by simply opening and actively using a OneUnited Bank account, we will continue to accomplish our mission!

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