8 sure-fire ways to kick the winter blues

Am I completely by myself when I say I’m not a huge fan of winter? I think not, but winter doesn’t need to be a time of unhappiness, illness and lethargy. Rather than endure winter, how about making winter work for you? Here are my tips for making it more bearable.

  • From the inside out – learn how to shift your mindset – Picture this; rain falling on the roof. Such a beautiful and soothing sound as you fall asleep. It’s not so lovely when it’s still raining in the morning as you’re leaving home. No wonder it’s easy to get depressed in winter, but you don’t need to be depressed all through it. There’s some great ways to turn your mindset around when you start to feel low.

    Nothing is more soothing than a roaring open fire, is it? If you don’t have one buy a wood wicked scented candle. It sounds like an open fire! Light scented candles and see how it improves your mood.

  • Sunshine on my shoulders – Vitamin D, that magical gift from the sun, promotes your mood and lifts your energy levels. Enjoy your morning cuppa in the sunshine and soak up the winter rays. Be sure to rug up and aim for 15- 30 minutes of daily sun soaking.

  • Treat yourself – Having something fantastic to look forward to can keep anyone feeling motivated! Plan something exciting and work towards it and keep it in your thoughts. Encourage a family member or friend to get involved and enjoy the planning phase with, helping to keep both your spirits up. It could be a holiday, weekend away, high tea, dinner, movie, yoga or meditation class.

  • Music – It pumps you up, makes you happy and reduces stress levels. Why wouldn’t you listen to a few tunes? Download free music apps with playlists for getting you going in the mornings.

  • Exercise in the morning – Set aside 15 minutes to take a brisk walk around the block, stretch or complete a mini yoga session. Take the dog for a walk and they’ll love you forever. Take a friend and you’ll both be thankful for getting each other’s butt into gear! What a brilliant way to start your day, where you’ve chosen your mindset and you’re creating your day.

  • Water intake – Start every day with a glass of water to hydrate your body. When the mornings are cold, try a slice of lemon in a glass half filled with tap or filtered water and top up with boiling water. Mix it up with tea and coffee during the day to keep your daily water intake at a good level. Delicious, healthy, refreshing and comforting all at the same time = winning combination!

  • Relax – make time to do nothing – Everyone deserves a break so schedule time to read a book, nap, meditate or have a massage. Don’t be afraid to say “No” to others and do not feel guilty. You deserve to put yourself first and recharge your batteries.

  • Food to boost your mood – A great tip to stay on track is to eat foods high in protein which are both nourishing and warming such as homemade stews, casseroles and soups. Eat these and you’ll feel fuller for longer, energy levels will be sustained and you’ll feel happier and content (and you’ll give yourself a better chance of getting through winter without adding a few kilograms along the way).

BONUS TIPS to give winter blues the boot

  • Get up during the TV ads and jog on the spot or do a household chore

  • Use hand weights first thing in the morning to get your blood circulating

  • Play actively outside with the kids

  • Organise a coffee and walk date with a friend every week

  • Buy a pedometer and count your steps. Aim for 10,000 a day.

  • Do a quick yoga session at your desk

What are you going to do today to make yourself happy?

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