It is the longest season of the year—the days get shorter, it gets darker faster, it’s freezing, and those three factors can take a lot out of a person. More than likely it is dark when you are driving to work, sunny while you are confined into your workplace, and then dark again once you get off work. Very rarely do people enjoy the barren, lonely winter nights and it is very easy to let the winter months bring you down into a case of depression. It is easier to sleep more and avoid social contact in the winter months, and during these months we also find ourselves alone in front of our TV more often eating. These habits are enough to send us into a seasonal slump until spring daylight savings time. I recommend checking out HBF for their health hub as it has a tonne of good information on general health and well-being which is even more important during the winter months when you’re more susceptible to illness. HBF also have some excellent health insurance plans if you’re looking for comprehensive healthcare coverage. Check out their online community Living Well for discussions on diet, exercise and general health.
Here’s five quick ways to easily beat the winter blues and stay your happy, healthy self.
- Soak up the sun. Even if it’s freezing where you live, the smallest bit of Vitamin D in sunshine can drastically boost your mood. People go outside less in the winter months, which can subsequently end up in seasonal depression. The littlest bit of sunshine can trigger neurotransmitters in your brain, boosting your mood dramatically.
- Exercise. This is a no-brainer for every season of the year, however, in the winter it is easier to exercise less, especially if you mostly exercised outside. A great way to maintain your exercise habits in the winter is to join a gym. A gym is a great way to exercise in a lighted atmosphere, as well as help you maintain social contact with other humans. Like sunlight, exercise also releases neurotransmitters in your brain to boost your mood, and it also keeps you healthy.
- Eat a wholesome, balanced diet. Everything you put into your body directly relates to the way you feel and how you think. Eating a balanced diet and consuming superfoods – foods rich in vitamins and nutrients that help you live a healthier life, will boost your mood, give you energy, and help maintain your weight. These foods also serve as antioxidants to fight off toxins in our body that make us sick, which also can bring us down in the winter.
- Get a hobby. Hobbies are important all year round, however, it is important to participate in an activity that you enjoy in the winter. Having a hobby will give you something to look forward to when you get off work, and will make you happier. Join a local club, participate in an art or craft, volunteer—anything to keep you off the couch and help engage with human interaction.
- Relax and treat yourself. With the winter months come the holidays and busy times at work and with family and other social events. Sometimes relaxing is just the thing that you need a few times out of the month. Treat yourself also. Whether relaxing is treating yourself or treat yourself to a spa day, a shopping trip, a special trip to visit someone—these things give you something to look forward to and you will find yourself more motivated and happy as you anticipate the event and as the event occurs.
It is easy to drown in the darkness of the winter months, but don’t let it take away your happiness and positivity. To beat the winter blues, do the things you love with the people you love. Keeping busy, relaxing when necessary, and living a healthy life can help you enjoy this bitter season, as well as help it go by faster.