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Winter is always a challenging time of year to stay active and motivated.
The long nights, naked trees and the chilly weather make you want to stay under your covers until the first bloom of spring flowers. You’re not alone if you find yourself researching ways to beat the winter blues by January 15th of the new year. If Punxsutawney Phil sees his shadow this year, there’s gonna be some problems lol.
These past few weeks have been especially hard for me. My dog passed away mid-December, and my lovely grandmother recently passed last week. Many tears have been shed, but with the support of my friends and family, I’ve been healing with each passing day.
Since these events happened in such close proximity to one another, I’ve taken a mental beating, with my thought process turning noticeably cynical and negative. Lucky for me, I’ve got an amazing boyfriend who brings me back down to earth with reminders that I have the power to change my thought process.
As much as we all would like to go to sleep and magically wake up in May, that’s just not going to happen. While we don’t have the option to time travel [yet], we do have the power to act and find tactics that help us beat the winter blues.
We may be down, but we’re not out! Here are some ways to help you beat the winter blues this year.
8 Ways to Beat The Winter Blues:
Book a Vacation
If you’ve been saving up vacation time, now’s the time to use it! Book a getaway to a tropical island, or get your ski/snowboard fix—whatever floats your boat.
The early parts of the new year can be some of the most intensive and stressful at work, especially since we all know nothing really gets done from Thanksgiving until the first week in January. Break up those first few months by booking a weeklong vacation to wherever your heart desires.
If you don’t have all that time, book a long weekend getaway close by.
Airlines like Spirit and Frontier, always have super cheapo discounts if you want to fly somewhere on a budget. I also love browsing sites like kayak.com and cheapoair.com for discounts—you just need to be flexible with your flight times and days.
*Related Post: Check out Ideas for Your Mental Health Day here!*
Treat Yo’self to a Spa Day
I don’t know about you guys, but I think the saying “look good, feel good” is so damn true. Sometimes when you feel beautiful on the outside, you end up getting that confidence boost you need to succeed.
Treat yo’self to a day of pampering, relaxation, and beauty. Get a mani-pedi, massage or facial at a spa. If you’re feeling bold, check out a salon and change up your hairstyle or add some highlights to add dimension.
If you don’t want to spend a fortune, create your own spa day at home. Get some bath bombs from Lush or The Body Shop, light some lavender scented candles and take a hot bath. Get some champagne too while you’re at it!
As I am sure we’ve all heard by now, exercising is a great way to get your happy chemicals flowing. Some science even thinks it’s just as effective at relieving anxiety and stress as anti-depressants. Sign me up!
I always mention yoga in pretty much every single one of my posts, even if it has nothing to do with what I’m writing about lol. Yoga is a great way to get moving, improve flexibility and build confidence. If you’re looking to sweat, check out a hot yoga class near you. Even if you just lay in savasana the whole time the heat will feel pretty damn good on yo skin.
Play Around with Essential Oils
I’m new to the essential oil game but I’m totally about ‘em 100%. Different oils work in different ways, so look up some essential oil concoctions that will make you feel relaxed or happy any energized. Whatever mood you’re looking for, there are different mixtures to suit your needs.
Check Out an Indoor Garden or Greenhouse
This is one of my ABSOLUTE FAVORITE things to do in the dead of winter. While I was studying for my horticulture degree, I found myself in and out of the greenhouse constantly, and it was usually just to brighten up my mood. The combination of the warm environment and the smell of all the flowers, plants, fruits and veggies really aids in beating the winter blues.
Bonus points, there’s no wind to blow around any pollen for all you allergy sufferers out there.
Start a Blog/Journal
Journaling and blogging is an outlet for all your feels both good and bad. Take these next few months to jot down any ideas or dreams you have. I find that using my blog as a creative outlet makes me feel great, and relieves stress.
Meet Up with Family and Friends
Friends and family are everything. They have the capability to make you smile in even the worst of times. Beat the winter blues this year by making time in your schedule to hang out with your favorite people.
Take Up a New Skill
Take a leap of faith and try something new!
For Christmas this year my mom got me a sewing machine. I’m super excited to give it a go, with my first project being new throw pillows for my couch.
There are so many resources out there to help you get started trying something new! Whether it’s a new exercise or craft like crochet and sewing. Youtube pretty much has everything you need to get started on anything. I’ve been using Craftsy to read up on sewing and it’s been so helpful. They have a ton of craft resources for whatever challenge you desire to take on. Whether it’s knitting, crochet, sewing, or even cake decorating they’ve got it ALL.
What do you like to do to beat the winter blues? Share your thoughts in the comment section below! 🙂