Beating the Winter Blues
Self-care is important year-round, but it becomes essential during the winter. It’s no secret that the colder months, with the long dark nights and lack of sunshine, can take a toll on our physical and mental health. Many people struggle with the Winter Blues. Whether you’re prone to seasonal depression or the stress of the holidays is overwhelming, it’s so important to carve out time to make yourself a priority.
How to Beat the Winter Blues
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This year, more than ever, the winter blues are a big issue for many. While going on a trip to an exotic Caribbean island might be off the cards this year, you can gear yourself up to beat the winter blues with simple activities that will nurture your body and make winter a little easier.
Here are some super simple (and extremely effective) self-care ideas you can try this winter. They may not all work, but I encourage you to give them a try, experiment and find a perfect winter self-care routine that’s ideal for you.
Self Care Ideas To Beat The Winter Blues
Make Exercise a Priority
I know… I know. The last thing you probably want to do when it’s cold is to crawl out of bed and kick in a workout, but getting your heart rate up is probably one of the most important acts of self-care you can do year-round, and even more so during the winter months.
Exercising is a wonderful way to keep those winter pounds off, but more importantly, it will release all those happy hormones that will help you beat the winter blues.
Getting creative is one of the best self-care activities. Not only does art keep you busy, but there’s nothing as liberating as letting your creative juices run wild. Don’t worry if your creations are not perfect. This is about being free and doing something simply for the love of creating.
If you don’t already have an artistic outlet that calls to you, try something new! Learning a new skill is an excellent way to get your mind engaged. With so many courses and training now available online, you can learn these skills from the comfort of your home. Talk to friends or search the internet to see what is available near you. Your local library can also be a great resource for connecting you with opportunities to learn.
Check out our DIY Magic Moon Mirror Tutorial
Learn a New Skill
It’s not just for art, you can learn lots of skills from home!
With so many cheap (or free) online courses out there, you can learn pretty much everything these days. Think of something you’d always wanted to learn to do, like yoga, woodworking, tarot reading, writing a novel, or belly dancing, and learn a new skill right from the comfort of your home. Who knows? You might wind up with a new hobby to keep you busy for years to come!
There’s something about winter flavors that make dark days a little bit brighter and spending lots more time at home now that the weather is colder means you have time to put on that apron and get baking. Some of my favorite desserts to bake during the winter months are apple pie, Christmas cookies, and chocolate pecan everything!
Make Homemade Soup
A homemade soup can be just what you need to boost your immune system and your mental health. No matter what your tastes, there is a soup recipe out there for you. This is one of my favourite activities when the days are long, hard and cold. I feel like I am truly forging some special magic as I carefully create my soup.
My number one tip is to save all of your veggie cuttings (freeze them until you have enough), then add them to a pot with water, spices and herbs to make your own healthy, budget friendly soup stock.
Give Aromatherapy a Try
Speaking of winter flavors, another thing that makes winter feel cozy is its scents! You can use essential oils or your favourite candles. Another powerful way to embrace an all natural scent is to make Yule Pomanders. This is not only a wonderfully calming and blissful activity, but the smell is incredible!
Try a Cup of Mulled Wine
Wine is always a good idea, but it takes a special twist in the winter! Mulled wine, or glüwein as it’s known in Germany, is a spiced, hot version of our favorite drink that will keep your heart and body warm during the winter.
You can also make non-alcoholic versions by trying a hot spiced apple cider.
P.S. – Don’t forget to stay hydrated with actual water, too!
Try Visualization Exercises
It’s no secret that meditating can have an incredibly positive impact on your life, and during the colder months, you can go that extra step and add in a few visualization exercises that take you to warmer places.
Write a Letter
No, I don’t mean an email or a Facebook message. Break out those special pens (yes, that secret stash of favourite pens!) and a piece of paper. Then compose a handwritten letter and mail it to someone you care about. One of those people you send Christmas cards to, but barely connect with the rest of the year. Write that letter and send it!
Curl Up With Tea and a Book
You know that TBR pile that is a mile high? Turn off all of the electronics, make yourself a cup of tea or cocoa, or pour a glass of wine, and pick the book that calls to you. Not the one your book club said to read, or that one you feel like you should read because it is going to make you better/smarter/successful. Pick the one that makes you happy. Even if it is an old favourite you have already read. Pick the book that makes you feel warm, safe, cozy and takes you on an adventure.
Connect with Someone You Care About
One of the best ways to beat the winter blues is to connect with those you care about. Although it is not the same to do it virtually, if that is your only option, reach out and make a date! You might be surprised how much someone in your circle needs that connection too. By reaching out you are helping them, and yourself to navigate these long dark days.
Start a Manifestation Journal
Part gratitude journal, part intention setting, part venting, a manifestation journal can help you realize your greatest desires, find purpose and fulfillment, and become happier as you embrace your best self. It is not hard to start, but it will take a bit of work to manifest your desires. The first step? Writing it down and starting that journal. Learn more about Manifestation Journals here.
Most of all, focus on you! Listen to your body and learn what it needs to be healthy and at its best, even when our nights are long and cold. If you need more help, never hesitate to reach out for professional guidance. Just like you would go to the doctor for a physical issue, if you feel your mental health is failing and you can not seem to gain your footing, seek help. With the right help, healing is possible.