The chilliest, darkest days of the year can bring depressed moods for many of us. Feeling stuck? You’re not alone!
Set The Mood
Light your favorite candle, make a warm drink, get under your coziest blanket, and relax! Pro tip: make sure your cozy spot is free of clutter. Clutter can amplify feelings of anxiousness or depression.
2. Stay Present
Avoid laying in your cozy spot and just simply mindlessly scrolling through social media or emails. For every 10 minutes spent on electronics, try to spend 5-10 minutes practicing meditation, deep breathing, reading a book, or writing in a journal!
3. Treat Yourself
Find a warm recipe to try, or re-create an old favorite! From soups, to crockpot recipes, to a warm batch of cookies, winter is a great time to get into the kitchen and warm up!
4. Share time with Others
While it is tempting to hibernate during the cold months, heading to work/school and back home again does not cut it! Make sure you are still reaching out to friends and family at least once per day, especially if you live alone! Make plans to go out, whether it’s to a coffee shop, ice skating, or a casual dinner. They may need it as much as you!
5. Show Gratitude
In January through March, it is easy to focus on nothing but the crummy weather! What makes you grateful to live where you live? The people or unique things to do? The tight knit community? It is a unique opportunity to be able to experience the four seasons every year. Try to think of 3 things you are grateful for each day!
6. Get Outside!
You’re never too old to play in the snow! Try skiing, snowshoeing, or ice skating! Or, grab your friends or kids and build a snowman, make snow forts, and more! Remind yourself how fun the snow can be! Even when it’s cold, fresh air is good for your physical and emotional health.
7. Keep Your Space Light
During the dark months, adding ‘therapy lamps’ to your common spaces can help you get the light exposure you are missing this time of year! Experts recommend getting 15-20 minutes of light exposure when you first wake up. There are alarm clocks on the market that mimic the sunrise, for those of us that start our day in the dark!
8. Add Vitamin D to Your Routine
If the dark months get you down, chances are, you are Vitamin D deficient. Try an over the counter Vitamin D daily supplement, or incorporate Vitamin D rich foods to your diet! These include fatty fish (like salmon), cheese, egg yolk, and orange juice.
9. Incorporate Mindful Movement
This is a great time of year to try hot yoga! To a novice, trying to do yoga in a 105°F room sounds intimidating, but yoga can be for everyone! Many local studios offer beginner classes and competitive introductory offers. If yoga isn’t your style, head to your local indoor pool and swim a few laps, or bundle up and go for a wintery walk In your neighborhood! Movement is so important for not only physical health, but emotional health as well.
10. Explore the Concept of Hygge
Hygge (Hoo-Gah) - The Danish Art of Coziness. It cannot be translated into one simple word, but Hygge emcompasses a feeling of contentment and well-being through enjoying the simple things of life. Check out the '“The Little Book of Hygge” by Meik Wiking, or do internet research on how to incorporate more Hygge into all aspects of your lifestyle!
Stay warm and cozy out there everyone!
Share with us how you like to beat the winter blues in the comments section!