This time of the year can be challenging for many, with dark and dreary winter nights. The seasonal festivities are long gone, and we’re still about a month away from the arrival of spring.
A recent survey of 2,000 adults – commissioned by Lottoland – found “42% feel they rely on pick-me-ups most during the winter, as almost 60% feel more down in the dumps and glum at this time of the year”. What’s more, according to the poll, “the average adult looks for something to pick their mood up as often as three times a day”.
Many of us are affected to some extent by changing weather patterns, finding ourselves less motivated than usual. And this could be even tougher for those living in small homes. That said, chin up – it’s not all doom and gloom. There are ways to beat the winter blues – even small things can make a huge difference and give us a much-needed boost. Here are our top tips to help get your groove back and channel your active self again.
- Take it easy
Don’t be hard on yourself. It’s a lot easier to get out of bed on a bright summer morning, whereas the winter chill significantly impacts our blood flow and muscle strength, hence making us feel sluggish and lethargic. Yoga, meditation, simple stretching exercises, or even a brisk walk, can help get those all-important endorphins flowing to kick start your day. Try the Headspace app for a range of ideas and advice.
- Eat healthy
It’s tempting to indulge ourselves in comfort eating during the winter months. Switch up your diet to incorporate starchy veg for good carbs. We’re talking sweet potatoes, butternut squash or parsnips. They’re high in antioxidants, vitamins and minerals – a healthy alternative to takeaway burgers and pizzas.
- Let the light in
Indoor lighting is key to getting you through those gloomy winter nights. Don’t underestimate the transformative power of a simple lamp to lift your mood and help you stay content. And if you need a “daylight booster”, SAD lamps (seasonal affective disorder) are great as they’re designed to reduce SAD symptoms and provide relief by replicating natural daylight.
- Treat yourself
Up the cosy and make your home the perfect place to be with textured rugs, fluffy blankets and cushions, and glowy ambient lights. And for that extra snuggly feeling, treat yourself to super-luxe, at-home loungewear, or a heartwarming hot water bottle. At Futon Company, there’s a great variety to choose from, offering you both comfort and style.
- Be active and sociable
Spending time with your family and friends can help relieve stress, giving you a sense of belonging. Get some proper “FaceTime” – go for a walk together, or catch up over a coffee. And if you’re being super organised, plan ahead and book something to look forward to. We’re not talking about just holidays, but also social gatherings or even personal challenges – all of which can help boost your overall happiness.
Fighting off the winter blues can be as easy as making a few small tweaks to your daily life. Meanwhile, if you haven’t yet set yourself a challenge for 2022 or made a New Year’s resolution, check out our nation’s top 10 for some inspo. Good luck!