Beat the Winter Blues
What’s your favorite season? Do you like spring when everything turns green and the flowers bloom? Are you a fan of summer with its abundant sunshine? Perhaps, you enjoy the cooler weather of fall and the changing leaves? Or is winter your thing with its promise of fresh snow?
For lots of people, winter is definitely not their “thing.” Shorter days, cold weather and snow are probably just a few of the reasons that some people would like to forget about this time of year. In addition, winter can bring on the “blues” – which nobody really wants to experience.
While the blues don’t prevent you from enjoying life, you may feel a little more tired and a bit more gloomy. Thankfully, if you think you’ve got a case of the “winter blues,” there are a few things you can do to keep them at bay.
- Eat Well: Winter is the season of…COMFORT FOODS! Yes, in the winter, your menu probably changes, and you add more “homey” and comforting meals – which often means more calories. And because so many of your favorite fruits and vegetables may not be “in season,” you might be consuming less of each of those. But, try to keep your diet balanced – and check out these 90+ Healthy Comfort Food Recipes.
- Exercise: When it’s cold, it can be tempting to skip your workout, but don’t do it. Make it an appointment with yourself – that you just won’t miss! Or, if you need some extra “pressure” to get a workout in, ask a friend to meet you. A brisk walk or some yoga together allows you to socialize and add some movement to your day.
- Keep a Set Sleep Schedule: Shorter days may have you heading to bed earlier, and cold weather may have you pulling the covers over your head in the morning – which can really disrupt your sleep schedule. And, while it may feel good at the time to spend an extra hour or two sleeping, studies have shown that not keeping a set sleep schedule can add to your winter blues. Work hard to keep your sleep times regulated – even if it means setting an alarm.
- Stay Socially Connected: Summer and fall may have had you outside with friends or family, but winter may be a different story. But you need to stay socially connected with those you are close to – as it’s important for your mental health. Schedule calls with friends, Zoom with your family, or schedule a virtual game night with co-workers – it will be good for you and the ones you reach out to!
- Laugh Out Loud: You’ve probably heard the old adage, “Laughter is the best medicine,” – and it is! Laughing releases endorphins, which make you feel happier – which means you need to stay in touch with people that make you laugh, watch your favorite comedies, or check Netflix for the latest special from your favorite comedian.
- Limit Your Screen Time: You’ve heard it before, but spending time mindlessly scrolling through social media can definitely take the joy out of things. It’s not to say you should jump off social media completely, but set some limits as to how much time you’re going to spend on the various platforms – and then put your phone away so you can resist temptation.
- Get Outdoors: Yes, fresh air is a mood booster! Grab your coat, a hat, and some gloves, and head outside to give your spirits a boost.
- Seek Help If Needed: And, while the winter blues are relatively common if you think it’s a bit more than the “blues,” seek out professional help.
This winter, keep the blues away by following these tips! You’ll feel better, and before you know it, spring will be here, and better weather will arrive.