6 Tips for Kicking the Winter Blues
Winter seems to be heading our way! While some of us may try blasting Christmas music to get through the cold, others may find the early darkness, and the blustery weather bringing on patterns of low mood. Rather than writing off the next 4 months altogether, consider these tips that have been shown to help improve peoples moods.
- Get active. You may feel like you don’t have the energy or the willpower to face the cold, but being active is important. Go for a short walk, do groceries, or browse through a few books or a magazine at a local café.
- See others. When feeling down, we often tend to isolate ourselves, and this is one behaviour that maintains a low mood. Try reaching out in small steps. Text a friend, call a family member, or a meet up with a friend. It can help to give close ones a chance to be there for you and help to improve your mood.
- Consider your perspective. Often we can get in habits of thinking negatively. It can be helpful to ask yourself a few questions, is there any other way I could think this about this? Are there some positive aspects that I’m ignoring? If someone else were in the same situation, would they think differently than I am?
- Take note of the things you are grateful for. Take some time each day, or each week, to notice and bring some attention to positive aspects of your life. Specifically, think about what you are grateful for. Gratitude allows us the opportunity to be appreciative of the aspects of our life that we are thankful for. It can be helpful to think of 3 things you’re grateful for, one thing about yourself, one thing about other people, and one thing about the world.
- Be kind to yourself. Try to talk to yourself as if you’re your own cheerleader. It can often help to take things one step at a time and give yourself encouragement when you achieve any progress, no matter how small.
- Notice your language. Are you watching Netflix and telling yourself “I should be studying?” Or does the phrase “I should be thinner” sound familiar? The word should can immediately induce guilt, try simply switching your language and saying could rather than should, this reduces the guilt, and puts you in control of making a choice!