I don’t know about you, but I’m definitely feeling the effects of winter. Short days, gray skies, rain, and colder temperatures have given me a mild dose of the winter blahs. For me, the symptoms of the blahs tend to revolve around “woe is me” type problems – thinking that I’m not good enough, pretty enough, nice enough, successful enough – yada yada yada.
But, instead of wallowing in those faux problems for very long, I’m working to beat back the winter blahs. Here are 7 strategies that help me; I hope they’ll help you too:
- Remember that you are a beloved child of God and nothing you think, feel or do can change that.
- Sleep enough, but not too much. Try to get 7-8 hours of sleep every night, but don’t sleep 10-12 hours a night. Both too little and too much sleep can negatively affect your mood.
- Feed your body healthy foods. Yes, it’s tempting to stuff ourselves with starchy comfort foods as winter drags on, but try not to give into the impulse. Those foods tend to make you feel sluggish, and they mess up your plans to look trim and fit by spring.
- Exercise. Lying around feels good in the short run, but exercise feels good in the long run. Try to do something that gets your body moving for 30 minutes 5 or 6 days each week.
- Spend time in natural light. It’s tempting to stay inside during the winter months, but exposure to natural light can improve your mood. So unless the weather is just unbearably foul, try to spend some time outside every day.
- Give yourself some little treats. At least once a week, give yourself a treat – something you enjoy that perks you up a bit. It doesn’t have to be expensive – simple pleasures work just as well as expensive indulgences.
- Plan something fun – soon and in the future. Plan a fun activity you can do in the next week – a family outing, a date with your husband, lunch with a friend. Try to do that every week during the winter. Then plan something you can look forward to, because anticipating it is half the fun. My husband and I bought a weekend trip to a mountain inn through Living Social last fall. We just scheduled it for a weekend in May, so now we can spend time thinking about it and researching activities in the area.
I hope these strategies help you feel calm and healthy (and maybe even a little sexy!) as you wait for winter to wind down. If they don’t, you may be experiencing Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD), which is more than the winter blahs. SAD responds to treatment, but requires more than simple lifestyle changes. If you’re feeling significantly down or depressed, talk to your doctor about treatments that can help.
How does winter affect you? Do you breeze right through it, or struggle to feel good? Please share your experiences and tips in the Comments – I would love to hear from you. Gaye
Linked with the fabulous blogs and blog hops at The Chicken Chick, I Gotta Try That, A Proverbs 31 Wife, My Turn for Us, Sunny Simple Life, Nifty Thrifty Things, I Heart Nap Time, Flamingo Toes, Six Sisters Stuff and That Friday Blog Hop.Pin It