Do you feel like curling up under the covers and staying there until the winter is over? You’re not alone! We think most people get the winter blues during these chilly, gloomy days with less sunlight and shorter, darker days. But, as always, we’re here to help you with some tips to boost your mood this season.
Despite temperature drops, try to make time to go outside as much as possible! You’ll definitely gain crucial mood-boosting vitamin D to increase your energy levels. If this isn’t possible due to a hectic schedule, then take advantage of your lunch break to feel the sun on your face. Even with just a quick walk around the block. You’ll think sharper and feel better – emotionally and overall.
Everyone’s first line of defence against mild-to-moderate, seasonal and clinical depression is a good dose of daily exercise – indoors or outdoors (walk, swim, or at the gym). It releases endorphins that’ll do wonders for your disposition. Your best option is an early morning workout because you’ll feel energised for the rest of the day and have your daily dosage of sunlight.
It may be challenging, but commit to keep drinking plenty of water. Failing to keep up with hydration will result in feeling constantly tired and hungry. It’ll also prevent dry skin. Also, keep in mind to reduce your alcohol intake over the next couple of months to reduce depression.
Stick to a Sleep Schedule
Prevent from throwing your body out of whack by keeping to your daily sleeping and waking schedule. It’s normal to feel sleepy and start yearning for extra winter naps, but it could lead to nights of interrupted sleep. Yes, you could make up for ‘sleep debt’ over the weekend; however, you can’t make up for the hours you lost. If you experience occasional sleeplessness, consider taking a natural melatonin supplement to help your body fall asleep faster.
Get a New Hobby
Find something that’ll keep you awake and interested in the cold weather and dark afternoons. Something you can do at home or perhaps something that used to be a hobby? Here are a few options that can be enjoyed in the comfort of your own home – knitting, crafting, woodwork, learning a new language, or writing.
Ordering takeout night after night can add to your feelings of sluggishness, lack of motivation, and depressed mood, not to mention what it’ll do to your wallet! Cook dinner on weekdays as it’ll be an extra activity to complete at home. Make it enjoyable by trying out new recipes, different foods or having family or friends over for warm home-cooked meals!
Look forward to special plans or occasions this winter. It’s crucial to make plans, especially with the grey and dark weather surrounding us. Get excited about the small things that interest you and make you happy. Plan a party for a small group of friends, plan a weekend trip, get tickets to a concert, or find a local event that does not require much money or travel time.
Embrace the Slower Pace
If you’re not packing your winter with loads of activities, it’s okay too. Don’t feel guilty about it. You can adapt to the slower pace of winter anytime for contemplation and reflection in your journal, getting lost in a book or taking a long winter drive. Sometimes the best time to cope is to slow down and cosy up to the long nights and colder temperatures.
If you feel more than just a little down each winter, with symptoms like missing work or struggling with even simple day-to-day tasks, ask your doctor about seasonal affective disorder (SAD) or winter depression.
Stay safe and take care, Sandton!