Daylight savings is great because that means that we all get an extra hour of sleep. But what most of us hate about the time changes is that we lose an hour of daylight. I don’t think many of us realize just how important that extra hour of sunlight is. When we wake up and leave for work it’s dark out and by the time we get out of work at the end of the day, it’s pitch black outside. If you work inside all day long, you won’t see sunlight until the weekend! Not seeing the sun for a couple days can really have an effect on our moods and I don’t think we all realize how important vitamin D is to our bodies.
You aren’t just imagining the difference in your mood during the winter. With shorter day and colder nights, seasonal depression is a real disorder that is more common in women than in men. We can find ourselves lethargic, overeating, and being sad all because we’re trapped inside for months. But, there are ways that you can get through the next couple of months with ease. Just by adding certain vitamins and foods into your diet or simply by taking walks during work, you can drastically improve your mood. Read below to find out all the things that you can do to avoid being in a gloomy mood this winter.
AVOID NEGATIVE TALK
The weather is always a topic of conversation during the winter months. The temperature drops down below freezing, snow is always in the forecast, and driving conditions can be horrendous. It’s easy for us to talk about how gross and horrible the weather is and how we hate the cold and driving in the snow. It can be easy to focus on the negative side of winter but we need to stay positive. Instead of thinking about all the bad and negative things that surround winter, think positive thoughts. For example, instead of thinking “wow it’s super cold outside today” you can say “yay I get to wear my new chunky knit sweater today because of the cold weather!” Just by changing your point of view on things can change your mental health for the better.
GET AS MUCH SUNLIGHT AS POSSIBLE
One thing that I need to do more often gets outside more during the day. At work, I am all the way on the 4th floor and I use that an excuse for not going outside. It’s terrible I know, I should get up, walk down all those stairs, and just stand outside for a couple minutes. Not only does it get me away from my desk for 10 minutes, but it will also get my blood flowing, and give my body so much needed vitamin D from the sun. If you really can’t get outside during the day I would recommend vitamin D pills! This little pill will help supplement the missing nutrients that your body needs.
During this time of the year, it always seems like everyone is getting sick. I don’t know if it is because of the weather, the foods we are eating, or the lack of proper hygiene, but everyone seems to be sneezing and coughing. It’s important for you to stay healthy during these cold months so that can be at your best! Also, drink all the water that you can during winter, your body needs it!
Since colds and the flu are always on the rise this time of year, it’s important to wash your hands before you eat, use hand sanitizer, and get your flu shot. It’s not just about preventative actions that will help you stay healthy, it’s also about what you eat. During winter you need to eat foods that are high in protein and in good fats. Foods like fish, nuts, meats, avocados, and cheese are great sources of those proteins and fats. And as always it’s important to stay hydrated and drink plenty of water.
It’s not just about what we eat or drink, we also need to stay active to be healthy. Like I mentioned above I should really be getting away from my desk each day and take a walk. During the summer I do this every day at lunchtime but now that it’s cold, I don’t want too. I hate the cold. But what I should really be doing is taking a walk around my office building to get my heart rate up. If you are feeling more ambitious, you can sign up for a workout class to go to after work or school or do your own workout at home. Exercise reduces your symptoms of seasonal depression and raises your level of endorphins. That means that you’ll feel happy and healthy after you work out!
MAKE YOUR HOME A WELCOMING PLACE
With the harsh weather outside it’s important to make your home a warm and welcoming place. I always like to keep a supply of big comfy blankets on my couch and packs of hot chocolate in the cabinet. Having candles and soft lights in my apartment also helps to calm me after working in a cold office all day. One easy way to make your home a more welcoming place is to add some greenery! Just because we got rid of our Christmas trees doesn’t mean that we can’t have a plant in our houses again until May. Some plants that you can get to brighten up your apartment and to purify the air are palm plants, ficus, philodendrons, fern plants or peace lilies.
Winter may seem like a never-ending time where it’s dark, cold, and gross outside. However, it’s important to stay positive, eat healthily, stay active, and get as much sunlight as possible to help keep us in a positive mood. These tips can make us feel better and help us be our best active selves this winter season.
What do you do to get through the winter gloom?