Woman smiling during the winter

How to ease your winter blues.

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10 simple ways to help alleviate seasonal depression.

Wow, this winter has really done a number on us. Current events have been unsettling and have required us to change some of the habits that bring us pleasure — being with family, going out with friends, shopping, and attending events.

On top of all this, the winter can bring on Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) with common symptoms of depression like oversleeping, weight gain, and lethargy. Lack of sunlight can affect the body’s chemistry and circadian rhythms. Talk to your doctor about treating SAD, if you feel this is an issue for you.

It’s not unusual to feel sad during the winter months. But take heart, spring will surely come. In the meantime, try these ten simple tricks that can help ease the winter blues.

Embrace winter

Don’t stay inside and hide from winter. Get out! Bundle up and take on the chill.

Step outside for a healthy dose of fresh air by taking a short walk or light a fire and treat yourself to s’mores. When you’re done, warm up with a long soak in the tub.

Give me a D! (Vitamin D)

It’s hard to get enough of the sunshine vitamin during the fall and winter.  Try to incorporate foods rich in vitamin D into your diet, like salmon, tuna, yogurt, milk, and cod liver oil.

Color yourself happy

Add some color to your life and lift your mood. Just a little color change can make a difference. Brighten your day, by wearing a bright color scarf or shirt, a pair of colored Converse sneakers, or just add a pop of color with bright mittens and a hat.

 Now could also be a great time to add a new color to your home. Paint an accent wall or bathroom. Buy some bright new towels or throw pillows. Invest in a bright and blissfully soft blanket throw.

Soup it up, or stew a little

Make a big bowl of happiness and health. Soups brimming with veggies and beans, slow-simmered stews, or spicy chili can set the tone for comfort and a sense of well-being. Add some homemade cornbread or rolls. These are meals that fill a room with comforting aromas and can be easily frozen and reheated to cheer you again.

Treat yourself to flowers

On your next trip to the grocery store, pick up a bouquet to celebrate you! Put the arrangement where you can stop and smell the roses, daisies, or lilies often. You can even break up a bouquet into small vases to place in other rooms of the house to spread the joy.

Climb out of the rut

Enjoy the shorter days by doing something different. Start a new project. Find a book you’ve been meaning to read. Plan a family game night.

No family around? Well, when was the last time you played solitaire with an actual deck of cards? Add a cup of hot cocoa and marshmallows, your favorite music, and let yourself win.

Make a clean sweep

What feels better than a clean and organized closet, garage, office, or even a sock drawer? Devote a day or a few hours to eliminate clutter, donate to charity, and enjoy the results.

Say it with music

Switch up your usual playlist. Indulge in some classical music. Close your eyes and make up a ballet or figure skating routine in your head.

Ask Alexa to play your favorite oldies. Best of all, get up and dance. Push aside some furniture for a dance floor. No partner required.

Light box for light therapy

 Switch on the sun

As a way of getting the benefits of light therapy, find way to add sunlight to your life. Throw open the curtains and pull up the blinds. Trim away shrubs or limbs outside your window to bring bright light inside.

Move your workspace next to a window. If this isn’t possible, get a therapy light box and use it for 30 minutes a day.

Plan for fun

Make a list of things you’re looking forward to doing when this season is over. How will you celebrate? Make a list of people you’re looking forward to seeing. While you’re at it, drop them a text message, email, or an honest-to-goodness letter to tell them you’re thinking of them.

Get online and investigate new places you’d like to explore, even if they’re in your own town. Just thinking of the possibilities can bring a smile to your face.

No matter the season, your friends at Regional Finance are here to help with needs for today, plans for the future, or advice to keep on budget. We can offer quick assistance with a fixed rate personal loan that, unlike credit cards, lets you know your exact rates and length of payments. Find a branch near you.

The information and materials provided on this website are intended for informational purposes only and should not be treated as an offer or solicitation of credit or any other product or service of Regional Finance or any other company. This website may contain links to websites controlled or offered by third parties. We have not reviewed all of the third-party sites linked to this website and are not responsible for the content, products, privacy policy, security, or practices of any linked third-party website. The inclusion of any third-party link does not imply any endorsement by Regional Finance of the linked third party, its website, or its product or services. Use of any third-party website is at your own risk.

References accessed on January 29, 2021:

9 Scientifically-Backed Ways to Beat the Fall and Winter Blues

10 Ways to Fight Off the Winter Blues

8 Ways to Cope with the Winter Blues

Seasonal affective disorder treatment: Choosing a light therapy box

The 79 Winter Soups & Stews That Will Warm You Up

Seasonal Depression (Seasonal Affective Disorder)

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