I’m not going to beat about the bush here. I really dislike, no, I hate winter. There I said it. Go off me if you want but there it is, out in the open.
Just look out of your window. It doesn’t matter if I’m looking out of my window right this second as I’m writing this or if you are looking out of your window in a couple of days when you are reading this. The picture will be the same.
Drab, dark, rainy, muddy and depressing!
I can’t even take the dog for a walk without having to put the poor thing in a bag to dry him off when he gets home.
If you are one of those strange people that enjoy winter, I don’t really know what to say to you other than, I can’t wait to wear shorts and a t-shirt and get a tan again.
However, as much as I’d like to I can’t magic the summer back right now but in case you are a little like me and you aren’t sure how you will survive the next couple of months.
I give you my 9 simple tips to beat the winter blues.
Get your backside outside in the morning
Instead of hiding away under your duvet insisting that the world should just go away, get outside. I find that the sun likes to show itself during the early part of the day but is hiding out somewhere else by lunch. If you can, spend some time outside, see what passes for sunshine this time of the year. I promise you will feel better.
Vitamin D Supplements
Or “happy tablets” as I like to call them. In all seriousness, taking vitamin D supplements can help to replace the vitamin D that we aren’t getting from the sun at this time of year. A lack of vitamin D can lead you to develop feelings of depression, having “the blues” and in rare cases, Seasonal Affective Disorder. And, as in the UK we don’t get enough natural sunlight on our skin to produce vitamin D from October to April, we could all do with an extra dose. Eating foods rich in vitamin D such as oily fish (mackerel, salmon, sardines), red meat and eggs will also help.
Light in a box or SAD Box
Yes, this is a thing. You can buy an artificial lamp that emits either blue or white light that mimics the sun’s rays. There are various different makes and types out there and they do vary in price. You can choose between a bulb and LED and different levels of power or lux which will determine how long they should be used for. They should also be used from the morning up to early afternoon as if used after, it could cause you have trouble getting to sleep. You can find out more here.
Stick to a sleeping pattern
I know that it’s really easy to stay in bed for a whole Saturday, especially if it’s dark outside but you must resist! Not only does it stop you from doing things that you really should be but it can also lead to feelings of isolation and guilt. I mean we all have things to be getting on with, don’t we?
Do some exercise
I’m sure you were waiting for me to get to this one. It’s took me a while, right? Exercise is really important to keeping you fighting fit throughout the winter months. The fitter we are, the better shape our immune system will be in.
Meaning we can laugh, err… no I mean look on with a sense of smugness at those that have the winter sniffles (I wouldn’t do that).
Exercising also makes you feel mentally stronger and gives you time to concentrate on you. You could even link this with tip 1 and exercise outside for a double whammy of good feeling.
I know there are still chocolates hanging around the back of the cupboards from Christmas but now is the time to throw them in the bin.
You. Have. Had. Enough.
Out of sight out of mind. Give your system a break, if you eat rubbish food, you will feel rubbish. I can’t really put it any more simply. Your midline, your skin, your hair and your belt will all thank me for this little piece of advice.
Spend time with your community
Exactly that. It’s too easy at this time of year to want to hibernate like a brown bear and emerge, squinting against the sunlight in the spring months. Spend time with your family and friends as your body will release endorphins, making you feel so much better about yourself. Spend time next to an open fire and play board games with friends, demonstrate Hygge. If you don’t know what Hygge is, you can find out here.
Spring is coming
I don’t mean this in a cheap, Game of Thrones knock off kind of way. Or maybe I do?
Spring is coming. Stand fast and before you know it, winter will be nothing more than a memory. If you can’t wait, here’s something I do that helps me. I sit with my eyes closed and imagine the sun light hitting my face. I even look up as if the sun is there and imagine that I can feel the heat on my skin. After a short while I can actually feel the sun on my face! The power of the mind demonstrated. Have a go, it always makes me feel better.
If all else fails
Go on a holiday. Winter sun holidays are ten a penny so if you can, there is no better time to get away. Imagine 10 days on the beach, a suntan and thousands of selfies you can bore your Instagram followers with.
There are even places in the world where they are guaranteed sun at this time of year.
Book it. Pack it. Fly away.
It is my hope that these 9 simple tips will help you in a small way to survive the grey mush that is the British winter as they have certainly helped me over the years.
Please share any tips and tricks that you have to survive the winter in the comments section below. I would love to hear from you.
Keep it simple