Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Five Ways to Overcome the Winter Blues

It happens to me every year: the dreaded winter blues. Without fail, it seems I pack away a little cheerfulness with each Christmas ornament I put away. I'm not sure if it's the post-Christmas let down, the fact that January is often dreary if not all out rainy, the colder weather, or a combination of all of these, but they seem to have a big affect on me. And not just me, a lot of friends, too. This year, I don't want to get in as big of a slump as I have in winters past. Here's what I'm doing to move past those winter blues.

1. Take Vitamin D. It sounds simple enough, but as the sunlight wanes in the winter, our bodies crave that vitamin D-producing sunlight. I tend to be deficient in vitamin D anyway, so a little extra never hurt.
2. Go outside. Speaking of sunlight....when the sun actually peeks through, take advantage of it and bask in all of its glory. It sure does beat being holed up inside in a lethargic stupor. It always makes me feel better.
3. Get Moving. Exercise may be the last thing you want to do when your battling the blues, but it really does help to improve mood if you can make yourself. I've been making myself go walking even when I don't feel like. After a bit, I'm more into it and end up being really glad I did.
4. Reach out to a friend. It's easy to stay to yourself, choosing to be a loner when the blues set in. But, pushing yourself out of that into a social setting can help combat it. If it's just going to lunch, exercising together, or catching up, make an effort to get yourself out of isolation. 

5. Plan a gathering or outing. Sometimes having something to look forward to and something to occupy your hands and/or mind helps to get out of a slump. Also, this helps get you out of the loner mode as well.

So far, I think doing these things is helping me not feel so blah! We'll see how it goes as winter continues. Do you deal with the winter blues? Are there some ways you've learned to cope and move past it? I'd love to hear! Leave a comment below!

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