We all seemed so happy at the beginning of winter. We reveled in the first snowfall, we could break out our ice skates and we looked forward to the month of feasting and reuniting with our loved ones. But once the holidays ended, we started to notice how short the days got, the lack of sunlight, and how frosty it became outside.
For many, Seasonal Affective Disorder, or SAD, is a common condition caused during the transition to winter, especially for those that live further north of the Equator. Symptoms include having low energy, insomnia, or mood swings. Here are eight things you can do to combat your winter blues.
1. Utilize light therapy.
Made to make up for the lack of sunlight in the winter, light therapy is used to promote a change in brain chemicals linked to your mood. Invest in a bright light therapy box, turn it on once you wake up and keep it on for at least 30 minutes.
2. Do winter-only activities.
This is the only time of the year you can ski, snowboard, ice skate, or frolic in the snow. The beach will always be there, but the snowy hills and iced ponds won’t.
3. See your favorite music artists.
The last few months of winter also mean festival season is upon us. Check out the lineup for Coachella this year. There’s nothing quite like the euphoria of being at a music festival, listening to the music you love with the people you love and being surrounded by hyped up strangers.
4. Remind yourself of what you have that others don’t.
The grass isn’t always greener on the other side. Don’t take your holidays and seasons for granted. You might be wishing for warmer temperatures but those that live in hot climates might be lamenting that their winters don’t actually feel like winter.
5. Find things to do even when you don’t feel like going out.
You might not want to venture outside because of the cold or because of how dark it gets midday, but don’t let it stop you from socializing. Have your friends meet you halfway or pick someone’s place to gather at and host a movie night.
6. Stay active.
If your resolution was to commit to a workout schedule, use your mood as all the more incentive to get to the gym and release those endorphins. If you’re on a budget, go for a run outside, and remind yourself that it’s winter, so you likely won’t want to pass out from heat. Check out more ways to stay active during the winter season.
7. Wear pops of color in your outfit.
You might not think that your outfit will affect your mood, but yellow is a happy color for a reason. Bring out the pink lipstick or that leopard handbag. While people wear mostly black in the winter, incorporating pops of color into your outfit can help you stand out in the office or classroom and also distract you from complaining about all the layers you have to put on.
8. Go on a well-deserved vacay.
If the holidays weren’t long enough of a break and you’re struggling to resume your old routine, schedule a trip to clear your head. If you’re really missing the warmer temperatures, take a weekend, or even a week, to travel to your favorite island or coast. Keep your eyes peeled for flash travel deals during these months, since it’s a non-peak time, and you could score an international flight for half of the usual price.
Remember: the summertime will be here soon enough.