You don’t need to spend tons of money on a hot holiday or do something extravagant to beat the winter blahs.
One of the big words rolling around this winter has been “hygge”, a Danish word that sparks feelings of cozily bundling up with a warm drink in front of the fire. The other half of hygge is based around simplicity, staying connected, and not letting the weather get you down. Doing hygge inspired things do not cost a lot.
We are going to share our approach to surviving what has been the longest winter of our lives.
Find a ray of sunshine. What makes you happy when skies are grey? For me, it’s flowers. It’s not necessary to spend much—many grocery stores have bouquets for under $15 and they will last for over a week (longer if you keep the water clean). Take some time to think about what your ray of sunshine is. On top of that, make sure you’re taking your vitamin D. Buy some fun gummies that are citrus flavoured for a taste of summer. Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) is no joke. Our bodies crave sunlight—even with the short days, open the blinds when the sun is out and bask in it!
Stay active. It’s easy to go into hibernation mode, especially when it’s been the longest, coldest winter we’ve had in years. Bundle up and head outside (yes, we know it’s cold!). Even if it’s just a walk around the block, it’s healthy to keep your blood pumping. Kill two birds with one stone if you head out when the sun is shining! (Vitamin D, I see you). Other great ways to stay active are to go for a skate, try snowshoeing, cross country skiing or sledding. You don’t need to have great athletic abilities for most simple winter activities. Besides that, getting active will get your endorphins working to improve your mood and increase positive feelings. Check your local area to see if they have skate or ski rentals to keep it budget friendly.
Keep in touch. – Think you’re the only person that has the winter blahs? Think again! If you’re feeling that winter is lasting for eons and eons, guaranteed someone you know is feeling that way too! Make some summery drinks and invite people over for a game night. There are a lot of drink recipes that use frozen juice and are perfect for the pocketbook! If you want an added flair (I’m all about those added flairs), get your guests to bring an additional sense of summer with their bad Hawaiian shirts and fun summer clothes. On the other hand, you don’t need to make big grand gestures to keep in touch with those around you. These days, you can reach out through any type of social media. Call or text a friend. See how they’re doing. Meet someone for coffee. It’s easy to become inwardly focused and feel like you’re the only one suffering through the longest winter. Just remember that there are other people who have also chosen to settle in the Great White North.
Bring the beach to you. – Do something that is outside of your normal winter routine. What makes you think about the beach, the lake and summer? Make some iced coffee (maybe turn up the heat or wrap up in a blanket while doing this). Pull some bright flowery summer clothes out of the closet for emphasis. We headed over to our local indoor pool—with our big sunhats, sunglasses, and summery pull overs. We got a few smiles when our crew arrived, decked out like we were on vacation somewhere on a hot sandy beach. We ordered iced drinks, hung out in the hot tub and played in the waves. Admission to the pool and a couple bucks for a cold drink kept it affordable and fun. Just what Dr. Pretend-It’s-Summer ordered!
Summer from the Inside Out. – Though it seems like summer will never come, just remember that seasons are faithful. In a world that is sometimes uncertain, seasons are constant. To help beat the winter blahs, eat a balanced diet all year round. We often want to load up on comfort food, complete with plenty of carbs, all winter long and then, when spring comes, we rush to get our beach bod back. Be sure to stock up on fresh fruits, veggies and fish—not only will it boost your mood, it will give you energy and a head start on getting beach ready.
“…just remember that seasons are faithful.”
If the weatherman is to be believed, we are on the upward swing of the coldest part of winter. This makes us so happy! But we also realize that spring can be slow to arrive. There may be a spring snow flurry or two to slow down the thaw. This just means that we get to do some of these fun things for longer! Share how you beat the winter blahs in the comments below. We’d love to hear from you!