Get over the Winter Blues with These 6 Tips

Winter can be difficult for many, particularly those with seasonal affective disorders.

Shorter days, a change in activities, and a lack of sunlight are all factors that can contribute to feelings like sadness, fatigue and low energy. There are some things you can try to beat the winter blues, and keep your physical and mental health in check during the colder seasons. Here are six things to try:

Get Some Sunlight

The reduced sunlight in winter is one of the main causes of SAD. The sun’s rays help regulate your body’s circadian rhythm, which controls your moods, digestion, energy, and sleep.

Make an effort to soak up some sun every day, even for just a few moments. Take a stroll outside, sit near a window or open your blinds to let some light in.

Exercise Regularly

Exercise can boost your energy and mood, as well as help you deal with anxiety and stress. Winter is a time when people tend to be less active. This can contribute to feelings of winter blues.

At least 20-30 minutes moderate intensity exercise per day is recommended. Try yoga or strength-training indoors if it’s too cold outside to walk, jog or ride a bike.

Eat a balanced diet

Holidays are a great excuse to gorge on delicious treats and indulge in excessive eating. This can have a negative impact on your mental and physical health.

A healthy, balanced diet can improve your health and help you to feel better in the winter. Include a variety fruits, vegetables and whole grains in your meals. Sugary and processed food can cause a drop in mood and energy.

Stay Hydrated

Water is essential for physical health and can improve your mood and energy. Drink at least eight glasses of water per day to remain hydrated. Avoid caffeine, alcohol and sugary drinks as they can dehydrate you, interfere with sleep and your mood.

Get Enough Sleep

Sleep is essential to your mental and physical health. This is especially true during winter, when shorter days can disturb your sleep patterns.

Create a bedtime routine that helps you relax and fall asleep. Avoid bright lights and screens before going to bed as they can disturb the hormones which regulate sleep.

Practice Self-Care

When you’re struggling, it may be beneficial to focus your energy on basic self-care tasks and hygiene. This includes showering, brushing teeth, shaving, washing your clothes, cleaning your house, etc. These things might seem too basic to have a significant impact on your mental health. However, when you’re in a bad mood they are the first to be neglected.

Also, schedule time to do things that you enjoy and relax, such as reading, writing or spending time together with your loved ones. Try stress-reducing techniques such as deep breathing or meditation. If you feel overwhelmed, seek professional assistance.

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