7 Ways To Boost Your Mental Wellbeing In Winter
As the season changes and winter sets in, you’ll notice changes in your health and wellness. The shorter days can make you feel less active. You may be less motivated to move out, exercise, or involve in social activities. With the gloomy environment, you may also feel like a couch potato, spending long hours watching TV and binge-eating!
Long hours of lazing around without any physical activity can result in serious health issues, like cardiovascular diseases, compromised immune health, and joint stiffness, among others. A lack of physical exercise can also affect your mental well-being. However, there are ways of overcoming the winter blues even while remaining indoors.
Tips To Boost Mental Well-Being During Winter
Though it is justified to feel lethargic during winter, it shouldn’t stop you from your regular activities. Whether you are travelling or on a holiday in your hometown, there is no dearth of things that you can do and enjoy during winter. You will have to just explore and make the best out of the season instead of giving in to winter blues. Follow the tips given below and enjoy this winter to the fullest.
#1. Make An All-Out Effort To Remain Active
A one-hour walk every day can be a great way to overcome the winter blues. Walking outdoors releases feel-good chemicals i.e. endorphins, that lower anxiety and depression. If you cannot motivate yourself to go outdoors, walking indoors has the same advantage.
With a lot of online exercise options, it should not be difficult for you to engage in a form of exercise that suits you the best. It could be an intense Zumba session or a relaxing yoga routine. Both can be equally enjoyable. Anything to keep you active is welcome.
Wearing warm clothes and taking a stroll in nature can help bring down your stress levels. A midday or evening walk also can do wonders for your mental well-being. Scenic beauty is at its peak during winter and can be a mood enhancer as well.
Spending time with your loved ones is the best way to lift your spirits. Don’t let the gloomy weather be an excuse to stay indoors. If you’re all out of friends nearby, contemplate enrolling in a hobby class and making new friends! Don’t let monotony harm your mental well-being.
#3. Affirmations Can Help
Positive thoughts and affirmations are a great, simple way of boosting your mental well-being. Google some easy affirmations to read out aloud during the day, or list down the things you’re grateful for every morning in your journal. These short exercises help change your mental makeup and lift your overall mood. Notice the positive things around you when you feel low – it could be the beautiful flowers and colourful birds in your garden, the snowfall, or your pet trying to grab your attention.
#4. Watch Your Reactions
Your reactions manifest your moods. So next time take a few breaths before you react to any incident that you don’t approve of. Reacting negatively can enhance your stress and frustration levels. Especially, when the winter gloom is already taking a toll on your mental well-being. Learn to let go and do something that can comfort and relax you like a hot shower, a bubble bath, trying some interesting recipe, or going out for a long walk.
#5. Get More Natural Light
Seasonal depression and melancholic moods are some of the traits you may experience during winter. Getting more natural light can help you overcome these moods. You can get enough natural light on middays or sunnier days during winter. If this is not possible, you can try light therapy where you will be sitting in front of a light box for a few hours. It will provide you with light that is 10 times stronger than your office or home light.
#6. Eat Healthy
Winter is also a season lined up with holidays. You will be in a holiday mood and tend to look for comfort foods that are loaded with sugar and fat. Too much comfort food can lead to obesity and obesity-linked medical issues. Comfort foods are mood lifters and they help mental well-being during winter but they bring other serious health issues alongside.
The best idea is to balance comfort foods with loads of fruits and vegetables. Eating healthy makes a lot of difference to your physical and mental well-being during winter. Include antioxidant and vitamin-rich foods. Including foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids is also a good option as they help in balancing your moods and keep your skin hydrated. Keep yourself hydrated by drinking adequate water every day.
#7. Indulge In Things That You Enjoy
Winter cold should not hamper your spirits to do what you like. If meeting friends or exploring a new eating joint, or even trying new cuisine is what makes you feel happy, go for it. If long drives excite you and you are keeping indoors because it is too cold outside, then you should wrap yourself in warm clothes and set out. Nothing should stop you from doing what you like.
If staying indoors is your choice, then you can indulge in things like reading your favourite book, solving a jigsaw puzzle, playing indoor games, spending quality time with your children, watching your favourite show on TV etc. These things cheer you up even in gloomy weather.
Winter can be taxing on both your mental well-being and physical health. Lack of motivation to stay active is one of the biggest reasons. You isolate yourself, become a couch potato, and end up feeling depressed. Self-motivation is the best way to tackle mood issues during winter. Force yourself to go out for a walk, make a new set of friends, do things that make you happy, eat well, and sleep well to feel the difference this winter. There are lots you can do during winter that can keep you pepped up.
Laziness sets in during winter. Why?
The decreased sunlight during winter due to shorter days affects your moods. Lack of sunlight affects the levels of serotonin, the happy hormone, in our brains.
Why do anxiety issues rise during winter?
Anxiety-related issues are usual during winter when the weather is gloomy. Lack of socialising and motivation to do things are some of the reasons why people feel depressed and anxious during winters.
What are the ways to beat winter fatigue?
Exercise, get more sunlight, sleep well, eat well, and do things that make you happy to beat winter fatigue.
What are the ways to get warm during winter besides wrapping in warm clothes?
Go for a long walk or jog. If you feel less motivated to set out in the cold, do pushups or jumping jacks or some indoor exercises. It will not only keep you warm but will help you burn calories and keep fit.
Does vitamin D help depression?
Various factors contribute to depression and other mental disorders. Getting enough vitamin D will potentially lower the risk of developing any mental disorders.