The winter blues.
Anyone else suffer?
It’s cold & dark & wet & gross outside and the darkness arrives super early, at like 4:45 in the dang afternoon for goodness sakes. Since you can’t spend as much time outside, then the vitamin D deficiency arrives and along with that – the schlump.
That post-Holiday winter schlump.
It’s a real thing, ya’ll. Technically called S.A.D., or “Seasonal Affective Disorder”. But, “the schlumps” works just fine, too.
I tend to start feeling rather blah towards the start of the new year – sometimes it sneaks up on me extra early though. As the impending winter looms ahead of me I start to feel incredibly restless & bored, yet also lethargic.
So. In an effort to not let these feelings get me down this winter, I will be making a little list of things that can help you (and me) out with those blasted winter SADs.
1. EXERCISE, EXERCISE, EXERCISE. AND THEN EXERCISE SOME MORE.
Getting moving is the number ONE thing that I can do that will easily improve my mood and drive. Whether it’s on the treadmill in my basement or going to an actual gym or even just doing a fitness routine online in the living room – SOMETHING can always be done. Exercise boosts your endorphins + makes you feel (AND LOOK) much better. Summer bodies are made in the winter, everyone! Getting on that treadmill and getting my heart rate up with some fast-paced music blasting on the headphones is a sure-fire way to boost up my mental state.
2. DON’T EAT HORRIBLY PROCESSED CARB-FILLED GROSS FOODS.
I have to remind myself of this on the REGULAR. For goodness sakes Ashley, EAT SOME VEGETABLES. PUT DOWN THE DOVE CHOCOLATE AND EAT AN APPLE. Eating clean, fresh foods will make your body feel 100x better. I promise. I am in the process of cleaning out my pantry and fridge of all the excess holiday junk right now in preparation.
3. DRINK UP. WATER. WATER. WATER.
This goes along with above. Drinking enough water for your body is essential! It keeps you from snacking on junky foods + regulates everything in your body + keeps bloat at bay + a billion other reasons. Cardinal rule: whatever your body weight is, cut that number in half and whatever that number is, is how many OUNCES of water you should be drinking per day.
4. GET A HOBBY!
Yep. Tackle something that you’ve been wanting to try or do!
Needing to clean out that storage closet? Do it!
Been putting off making all those doctor/dentist/whatever appointments? Call now.
Join that weird book club at the library!
Join that exercise group at the gym!
Been wanting to learn how to knit? Cross stitch? Now’s the time! Michael’s is right down the street!
Have a pile of books you’ve been meaning to read? Hello. It’s time.
Switch things up and get a new haircut – and then work on a new look/style! Make-up, hair, whatever!
Want to write a book or something? Sure, why not?!
Whatever it is – do it. Keeping your mind busy and active is a great way to fight off anxiety/restlessness/boredom.
5. LIGHT SOME SUMMERY SMELLING CANDLES.
It may sound dumb, but it works for me. Maybe it’s snowing or raining or just 30 degrees outside – but if I’m burning a “Luau Party” Yankee Candle… It makes me feel better about the coldness outside.
Along with this…
6. CLEAN AND ORGANIZE YOUR SPACE.
Whatever your space may be. A house, an apartment, a room. Get it cleaned up and organized. Throw out all the excess trash and junk that you don’t need or use and with those fruity candles lit – you’ll feel great. There’s nothing like relaxing in a clean & organized environment, in my opinion. Ideally, I like my house to look like no one actually lives there. I am straight up allergic to clutter. I LOVE CLEAN SURFACES. I don’t want A SINGLE THING ON MY COUNTER TOPS OR TABLES. If it’s in my way – I throw it out, or stick it back where it belongs. Drives Joe crazy but it keeps me sane.
Joe showed me this video a while back because he swears that this is me to a T on a regular basis. Not even just when we are expecting company.
I had to laugh hysterically because he is so RIGHT. Not even embarrassed about it.
7. PLAN A VACAY.
Even if it’s just somewhere local! Thinking about taking a trip somewhere can seriously boost your mood. It could be winter outside but if I’m thinking about and planning that beach week in June – this pleases me.
8. PLAN A SMALL OUTING, EVEN!
Even planning something small with friends that get you out of the house is a great idea! Meet some friends for coffee! Try out a new restaurant – maybe even a super nice one where you get to get all dressed up and fancy. Plan a trip to visit some museums. Plan a weekend at a hotel in another nearby city that you haven’t been to and explore! Hey – take a freezing walk outside, even – that’s fun too!
9. FILL YOUR SPACE WITH FRESH FLOWERS!
Hey – if you can’t have spring outside, bring it to the inside! Fill your living space with fresh-smelling, bright and colorful buds that make your home feel like a spring oasis.
10. BLAST THAT SUMMER PLAYLIST.
Pump the beats. No, really.
Whatever it is that you like, blow it out. T-Swift, T-Pain, Barry Manilow – I don’t know your life.
Guaranteed to get you up and in a good mood.
So! These are a few things that I’m personally going to be keeping in mind this winter as some ways to keep out of the winter schlump-grumps.
Anyone have any other ideas? Open to them all! 🙂