5 shortcuts to avoid winter blues and get more energy
When winter is cold and grey, it can feel inhumanly long. If you’re getting a little winter blues in the dark months of the year, check out this mini-guide. It helps you lift your spirits and get through the winter with new energy.
Why is someone hit harder by the darkness?
There is a physical difference in all of us if we look at hormones and fatigue. Age also plays a role – if you have reached a certain age, you typically have less energy. At the same time, we are different on the emotional level. For example, if you have low self-esteem, you may have a harder time regulating your emotions and getting yourself in a good mood after having been upset.
Try to learn to tackle the darkness by finding inner peace and training the mind to focus on the positive e.g. by meditating, doing sport or being amongst people you like. Socialising is important.
Why does the body become winter depressed?
In winter, the body lacks vitamin D, which we typically get from sunlight. So we get tired when the sun goes down because the body starts producing the substance melatonin. It is the sleep hormone that makes us yawn and we feel like turning off the light and going to sleep. We are more tired during the winter months because we have far more “sleep hormones” in our bodies than during the summer. This is because the melatonin is not present during the day.
HOW TO AVOID WINTER DEPRESSION AND GET MORE ENERGY?
- ACCEPT THAT YOU ARE TIRED
Allow yourself to take it easy when it’s winter. It is only natural that you are tired. Make sure to create some cozy moments for yourself with candles and good company – when we are social, we are filled up with happiness hormones. To create cozy moments, you can light some candles, grab your favourite blanket and snuggle on the sofa. Read a good book with a warm cup of hot chocolate, watch a good movie, take a long bath, or meditate. Options are plenty so do whatever makes you feel good and cozy.
- PLAN A “ME DAY”
Set aside one day a week to do something you enjoy. Go out climbing, refuel with cultural input at an art museum, go to a spa treatment, try winter bathing, or even go out with your best friends for a fun social day.
That way, you get your thoughts restructured and take a step away from the sadness, self-blame and lack of energy that hangs on the Netflix sofa at home.
- PRACTISE GRATITUDE, WRITE DOWN THE GOOD THINGS
Always have a book and a pencil lying on the bedside table. Before going to bed, write down three good things that have happened during the day. That way, you train your memory on focusing on the positive, and you store good memories. It strengthens your mind.
- GET LIGHT AND AIR
Make sure to get outside and get sun and fresh air. Take a walk and enjoy nature or the city you live in. When we look at things around us and feel present, we clear our heads from the thoughts that we typically get filled up with when we walk around at home. If you suffer from real winter depression, it is a good idea to invest in a light therapy device, where the solar energy and UV rays will make you feel better and recharge your vitamin D stores. Alternatively, you can take vitamin supplements.
- CULTURE LOVE
If you are in a relationship, your partner is an important help to steer clear of winter blues. Instead of sitting and watching television or staring at a screen, be present with each other – that creates passion and intimacy in the relationship. You can take a bath together or give each other massages, which also release the happiness hormones we so desperately need. It makes us happy and we feel closer to each other.