It’s no secret that I’m not a fan of winter…All that dark and all that cold. Ick/Burr! So here are a few strategies that I use to banish those winter blues.
Let there be light!
One factor that effects your mood in winter is the lack of sunlight. Sunlight increases the levels of serotonin (the happy hormone) in your body. It also helps to suppress melatonin a chemical which leads to drowsiness and sleep. The sun helps your body to produce vitamin D. This vital nutrient boosts your mood and strengthens your immune system. So with the lack of sunlight, it is no wonder you feel a little sluggish and sad in the winter.
So what can you do?
- Get outside to increase your levels of serotonin. Go for a little walk outside and you’ll increase your serotonin (feel good hormones) even more and feel even better.
- Open the curtains or blinds. Let the daylight into your house. Surround yourself with light, happy colors. Turn on more lights or add extra lamps into your house.
- Purchase a Himalayan Salt lamp, it gives off a type of ion that boosts your mood.
- If you really feel sad, invest in a full spectrum of light or light box.
- Take a vitamin D supplement.
Stay Warm, Stay Well!
Winter cold can make you feel exhausted. Your body actually burns more calories, expends way more energy, when you’re cold. Shivering can increase your metabolic rate as much as five fold and feels miserable. It’s no surprise you feel more tired in the winter cold.
So what can you do?
- Dress in layers. Wear undershirts, under layers of shirts and sweaters. Even consider long johns!
- When outside wear a warm coat, scarf, gloves, and especially a hat. Remember a significant portion of your body heat is lost through your head.
- Don’t neglect your feet. Wear warm socks and shoes or boots that protect your feet from wetness as well as cold.
- Sit by the fire or use little electric space heaters to provide extra warmth. One of my favorite techniques, that I learned from my husband, is to use a heating pad to stay warm.
- Then there is snuggling! Cuddle with your loved ones and pets under big fluffy blankets or quilts.
So I hope these simple strategies add a little light and warmth to your life and make your winter brighter and happier. Let me know what you do to battle the winter blues…leave a comment below.