How to deal with the winter blues

Hey guys, hope you’re all well and having a good week. I can’t believe how fast this year is going, before we know it it will be Christmas!! As if!! Anyway I thought it was the perfect time for me to come at you with a a seasonal blog. And by seasonal, I mean our mental health in winter.

Now for most, winter is a good season. It’s hot chocolates by the fire, wrapping up warm, snow days and of course, Christmas….but for others, it’s a tough time.

The winter brings dark nights, shorter days, no vitamin D and Christmas time can be painful for people who have lost loved ones. It’s not easy for everyone. Seasonal affective disorder (SAD), is a disorder which comes around in the winter and can leave people feeling extremely low and depressed. Having a lack of daylight affects our brains and unfortunately for some it’s not in a good way.

Now usually winter is my favourite season, however, I struggled last year with a winter lockdown, I felt low, unmotivated and in general felt sad. So I wanted to help anyone else from experiencing this, this year. So here’s my tips on how to shift those winter blues and have a great Christmas period!

1). Stick to your usual goals- I know it’s hard to get out of bed on a dark, rainy morning and I know it’s hard to get to the gym when all you want to do is stay on the sofa watching Netflix, but try to stick to your set goals. It might be a little harder in the winter but you will feel so much better and sticking to goals helps to motivate you even more. The more productive we feel, the better we feel mentally.

2). Keep in touch with people- Christmas is always a very social time for people, and its always a nice time of year….but remember to be social in the weeks before Christmas, and those horrible weeks after Christmas too. Make plans with friends and family, talk on the phone and go out and socialise. It’s important to keep connected.

3). Make plans- This is so important, especially after Christmas when all the fun is over. Make sure you have something to look forward to, whether that’s a day out with your friends or a little weekend away. Have something in the diary to keep you going.🥰

4). Take vitamin D suppliments- Vitamin D tablets are available at places like Boots and Superdrug and are only cheap. They’re a great way to start the day, giving you that little vitamin D boost that you lose in the winter. It will really help to replace the vitamins that you miss in the winter and will hopefully ease that ‘blue’ feeling a little over time.

5). Eat healthy– Now I don’t mean stop eating chocolate and I don’t mean swap your mince pies for a protein shake, but remember to fit in your nutrients as well as everything else. Eating healthy makes us feel good and helps to boost our immune system, so remember to still eat 3 meals a day and get in that fruit and veg.

6). Continue to exercise- This can be much harder in the winter months as it’s dark outside, cold, and the last thing you want to do is drive to the gym after a long day, but remember how good it will feel afterwards. Get that boost that you need this winter from exercise.

7). Take control– I think over Christmas it becomes harder to say no. You end up sending Christmas cards to people you might not even like and you might have to meet up with family you don’t get on with. Well simply don’t do it this year. You’re mental health comes first and we shouldn’t have to change just for the season. If seeing certain people or going on nights out makes you anxious then say no. Take back control and remember to look after yourself this winter. Honestly, try it and see how much better you feel.🥰

8). Don’t stress about gifts- The right people in your life will want time with you this Christmas, not gifts. I think the pressure to give and spend lots at Christmas causes anxiety in a lot of people. Once again, don’t let it get to that. Give to who you want and give what you would like. Don’t give extravagantly this year, give thoughtful and heart warming gifts. Don’t go bankrupt because of one day.

9). Keep distracted– This really helped me last year when I was struggling. With the cold, dark nights we tend to stay in more in winter and sometimes this just causes more overthinking time and therefore more anxiety. Make sure to have things to do this year. Get your head stuck into a jigsaw, spend the evenings making handmade Christmas cards or maybe bake some mince pies. Whatever it is, keep that mind busy and distracted to prevent overthinking.

Anyway that’s all from me today guys, thanks so much for reading and remember to keep positive and keep going this winter. You’ve got this and blogs will still be posted every week.🤍

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