Looking after your mental health at Christmas

Watch our short animated film and find out about mental health drop-ins available in the New Year

We know that for those struggling with their mental health, Christmas can be a difficult time.

That’s why this festive season we’re launching a short animated film to share some of the things that can help and the places you can go for advice and support over the Christmas period (and beyond).

We’re also taking the opportunity to remind you about a programme of drop-in sessions that are available across Leeds throughout the year that are open to anyone in need of help with their mental health or who may be feeling isolated or alone.

Zellany Neal, a mental health practitioner at Leeds and York Partnership NHS Foundation Trust, said: “Christmas can bring a unique set of challenges if you’re struggling with your mental health. Things can be out of the ordinary, which can be unsettling, and there’s a real pressure to feel like you’re having a good and happy time.

“You may find yourself spending a lot of time with people that you wouldn’t usually be around, which can be difficult if you’re used to your own space, or you may find yourself feeling lonely and unsure of where to turn for company.

“There’s also the financial burden that may add to your worries, if you feel there’s an expectation that you need to buy certain gifts or feed your family in a certain way, and then there are the effects of alcohol to deal with. It’s completely normal to feel extra strain in these circumstances.

“But the good news is there are things you can do that can help.

“Self-compassion is really important at this time of year. It’s vital that you look after yourself, take some time, and turn your attention to the things that keep you well, rather than focusing on troublesome thoughts.

“It can be as simple as going for a walk to take a break from a busy household, doing something you enjoy to distract yourself, or talking to someone.

“It’s important that you know you are not alone.”

Watch our short animated film below.

Drop-in sessions for people struggling with their mental health are available city-wide in the New Year

A programme of drop-in sessions launched to support people in Leeds who are struggling with their mental health are now being offered city-wide.

The sessions are run by a team from Leeds and York Partnership NHS Foundation Trust, in partnership with Yorkshire-based mental health and wellbeing charity, Touchstone.

As well as providing a listening ear, expert staff at the drop-ins can offer advice and signpost to other relevant services. They can also provide practical support with things like forms and phone calls related to everything from housing to benefits.

The sessions are open to everyone, whether or not they’re already under the care of NHS services. The only people they can’t support are those currently in a mental health crisis, or those under the influence of drugs or alcohol.

Previously, drop-in sessions had been held in the centre of Leeds. This has now expanded, city-wide, to cover the following areas.

Times, dates and venues
Dewsbury Road Community Hub, Beeston 
First Tuesday of every month, 11am to 12.30pm
Armley One Stop, Town Street 
Second Tuesday of every month, 1pm to 2.30pm
Reginald Centre, Chapeltown
Third Tuesday of every month, 1pm to 2.30pm
Seacroft Community Hub, Deacon House 
Fourth Tuesday of every month, 11am to 12.30pm

Please note, there will be no drop-in sessions on Christmas Day or New Year’s Day, but these will resume at Armley One Stop on Tuesday 8 January.


Download a poster advertising the sessions.
Download a flyer advertising the sessions.

For more information, please contact:

Community Mental Health Team
Aire Court
0113 855 0600