With shorter days, dark mornings, and chilly weather, it is easy to see why many of us start to feel a bit blue as we head into the winter months. If you are one of the countless people feeling less than cheerful at the thought of winter approaching then you’re in the right place! We have put together 6 top tips to help you beat those winter blues:
Try and embrace winter by taking a leaf out of the Danes’ book and get your Hygge on! Hygge (pronounced hoo-guh) is all about finding joy in the quiet, cosy moments – like snuggling up under a warm blanket with a hot chocolate, reading your favourite book.
Shifting your mindset to thinking about the winter months as an opportunity to slow down and enjoy getting cosy at home can help you to feel more positive about the season.
So this winter, create a nice welcoming atmosphere at home and add some cosy cheer to those longer evenings by setting the scene with lots of comfy blankets, candles and a good book or film. And why not share TV recommendations with friends to watch together and keep everyone’s spirits up?
Make the most of the daylight
Aim to get out into the daylight every day, and especially on brighter days. For maximum benefit head outdoors at midday if you can. It is all about trying to get as much natural daylight exposure, and Vitamin D, as possible. A good dose of Vitamin D is essential to our physical and mental wellbeing.
When the weather is against you and is making it impossible to get outdoors, you can still get some sunlight benefits indoors by sitting near the window.
Give a light box a go
To really kick those winter blues you might want to consider investing in a light box. They produce a very bright light to mimic the sunlight which we naturally get less of during the winter months. Light boxes are thought to help banish the winter blues by encouraging your brain to produce the happy hormone serotonin.
There is a whole range of options out there, from the cheaper models to more stylish options – check out this guide here which compares a few different models. This can be a particularly good investment should you suffer from Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD).
Stock up on fish oil supplements and vitamin D
A study has shown that taking vitamin D improved the mood of people suffering from the winter blues, and Icelandic people credit their low rates of Seasonal Affective Disorder to their high consumption of oily fish, rich in Omega-3.
So you could try adding fish oil and Vitamin D to your usual supplements this winter to help boost your mood and banish those blues.
Taking up a new creative hobby can help to ward off the winter blues by giving you something positive to focus on and look forward to. It can feel really rewarding to put those long evenings and rainy days to good use by learning a new skill – maybe you could take up knitting, learning a new language, or challenge yourself to try out some new recipes in the kitchen.
Engaging in a hobby that we enjoy has been found to cause the release of feel-good chemicals in our brain like dopamine. Another way to give your mood a boost this winter!
Make fun plans with loved ones
Give yourself something to look forward to and get some fun plans in the diary with your favourite people. Spending time with supportive friends and family boosts our mood and benefits our overall well being.
So get some dates in the diary – whether it’s a dinner party, or just a cosy film night in with your best friend. Make sure to plan in time with your friends and loved ones to lift your mood and help banish those winter blues.
Check in with your doctor
Seasonal Affective Disorder, or SAD, is a seasonal type of depression affecting people during the winter months. If you think you might have SAD, or are experiencing low mood, you should consult your doctor for advice.