When the biting winds roll in and the first flutters of snow are seen, it can signal an equally heavy and tired mood for some people. Although the “winter blues” are not unheard of, the jury is still out on whether it is as serious as Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD.) But even if it’s a simple loss of motivation, there are multiple ways to perk yourself right up!
Stop it before it strikes
Firstly, preventive measures can help avoid stress and lessen the effect of the winter blues. Some may find it hard to keep track of essential jobs when a glum mood strikes – it’s far easier to cuddle up with your computer and lose yourself in the depths of the internet- it’s common to find yourself stuck to your laptop hours later.
Although this is acceptable from time to time, but it’s better to keep yourself level-headed and organised with some form of agenda. Even the most basic to do list will encourage you to progress. Like all of us, I’m guilty of leaving a cute journal hidden away on a shelf – a list on the fridge or another visible place makes this exercise far more productive for a winter blues sufferer.
How to stay productive
Furthermore, techniques like bullet journaling exist for the more dedicated among us. My particular preference for bullet journaling is derived from the satisfaction I gain when I mark off completed events – I am childishly amused by having a variety of colours and little symbols. Any chance to make something pretty and draw keeps me happy, staving off winter blues.
Because of this, I’ve realised that it’s nicer to try and find pleasure in even the most banal activities and embrace your quirky tendencies. It’s also crucial to break down projects into smaller tasks. Completing an essay or mastering a new skill can seem overwhelming, but dividing the task into manageable chunks often leads to success.
Don’t forget to have fun!
When trying to get out of a winter blues-induced funk, it’s often helpful to get funky. Singing and dancing with a hairbrush in hand can be very cathartic (at least according to many films!) In fact, it’s good to intersperse your day with little treats to improve your mood and concentration.
Old favourites like Legally Blonde never fail to simultaneously inspire and cheer me. The perpetually happy Elle Woods provides an important reminder to appreciate how great you are, as well as reminding you to find the positives in any situation, no matter how hopeless the outlook may seem.
During intensive periods of revision, cooking dinner often provides a well-timed break to halt the stress dominating and controlling my thoughts. This may not be the case for everyone, but there are alternatives. Even though I can’t understand why, working out is allegedly perfect due to all the endorphins released from the process.
Whether it’s going for walks, having a long bath, or practising any form of self-care, it’s crucial to remember that you don’t have to fight the sadness alone – there are others that will do all these things with you, and friends can provide the best help to kill those winter blues and get you feeling positive again.
Have you got your own way of beating off the winter blues? Tell us in the comments below!
Photo: Alex Akopyan / Flickr