With Christmas around the corner and temperatures dropping by the day, we are no doubt in the midst of winter but with all the festiveness approaching it’s not unheard of to feel a little down. Here are five tips to help dissipate the winter blues.
Keep yourself busy: Staying active is a crucial element of our mental health, however it can be easier said than done. The days are shorter and darker and the desire to get off the sofa is all that bit harder. We can all be tempted to stay in and stick on a cosy film, but instead why not head out for a walk (or run if you’re into that!) or download an exercise app that will help keep you feeling motivated. Regular exercise has been proven to put us in a positive mindset due to its serotonin release.
Prioritise your social life: The festive season is a heavily socially based time of the year, but if you’re not feeling the joyful spirit we see all around us this month, that’s ok too! Nonetheless, this is no excuse not to meet up with your pals. Making the effort to stay in touch with family and friends will help you feel less isolated and alone. So head out to the Christmas markets or hit up the shops.
Surround yourself with positivity: Research has shown that listening to cheerful and uplifting music can easily lift your mood. So if you’re finding yourself looking for that sad songs playlist you’ve become so accustomed to, try something more merry instead. The same goes when it comes to movies and TV shows, put on a feel-good film that’ll have you laughing away your worries.
Eating the right foods: When we’re feeling down it’s very easy to turn to comfort foods, especially around this time of year. It’s important to balance out your diet, making sure to get the recommended five a day and the required nutrients to keep your body and mind healthy. A good way of ensuring you’re making the most of your three meals a day is to start getting up earlier. Instead of waking up and lounging in bed for a while, set an alarm and train yourself into a new routine that will ensure you have time for a hearty breakfast. Taking vitamins is also vital during the cold months.
Talk to someone: If you’re stuck in a rut and struggling to see a way out, it’s always best to talk to someone about what you’re feeling. Whether it’s a family member, a friend or a therapist, voicing your struggles will ease them. If you are worried about financing therapy on a student budget there are online therapy platforms that won’t break the bank.
Words: Patrick Grady | Subbing: Lumi Leinonen