We often think about self-care in terms of curling up with a good book or soaking in a hot bath, but the true value in self-care is more complex than a few simple activities. It’s common to feel a little down in the winter and many people experience significant mood swings.
How can you focus on yourself now that the holidays have passed?
TURN ON THE LIGHTS
Limited exposure to sunlight can start the ball rolling toward the Mid-winter blahs. Even here in Atlanta, the cold weather drives us indoors. When we changed our clocks back in November, we gave up some daylight. Even though the days are now getting longer again, it will be a little while before we reach equilibrium.
More exposure to light can improve your mood. There are light therapy lamps that mimic sunlight and can give you the right boost of energy. There are sun lamps for every budget, readily available online.
When the winter blues creep in, one of the best solutions is to do something for someone else. Practicing kindness and gratitude to help others can allow you to focus your energy productively. The options are limitless. You can help a neighbor buy groceries, adopt a pet who will need to be fed and walked each day, or do simple chores for a friend.
Volunteering can also give you an emotional boost. Community involvement improves mental wellbeing and is even good for physical health.
SURROUND YOURSELF WITH POSITIVE PEOPLE
A network of positive people can also fight the post-holiday blahs. When we spend time around negative people it’s natural to internalize those feelings. The same works with positivity. Their messages of kindness and joy can help you feel a little bit better.
Of course, it’s okay to have a bad day now and again. When you feel it coming on, try to focus on cheerful and positive energy to fight the blahs this winter.