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wellbeing with sally; beating the winter blues

Updated: Jan 10, 2022

Hi everyone, hope you’re all doing well and adjusting to the colder weather okay. Some of us find it tough when the seasons change and there is less daylight and sunshine. Sunlight is good for us and helps our moods and focus. It is not surprising that some of us really suffer when the Winter months hit.

Here are some tips to help beat the Winter blues:

1. Light up your rooms! All forms of light can help to lift moods, so whether it’s putting more lamps in one room or placing some fairy lights near your seating areas (preferably LED lights), this all helps. Bright and colourful cushions and décor can also subtly help with moods, especially on darker days.

2. Get in good company – spending time with others helps to combat depression. Make regular plans to see friends and relatives – this really helps our physical and mental health, it even helps to reduce blood pressure and stress.

3. Take regular exercise – this doesn’t have to be a long run every day. But taking 10-20 minutes out of your day to walk, jog or go to a local gym is really good for us. Some people report this being as effective as taking antidepressants.

4. Watch your sugar and carb intake – Although very tempting to reach for the sugar and carbs in those Winter months, the result can be a big flux of energy followed by a big slump! In order to keep energy levels good and stable, eat more oily fish, vegetables, fruit and wholemeal foods. It is sometimes good to take some extra vitamin D.

5. Get some daylight and be outside – Sometimes the thought of being out in the cold couldn’t be further from what we want to do. But, getting outside and walking, even just for 10 minutes round the block and getting daylight can really help lift the mood, even on cloudy days. Maybe make it a priority in your lunch hour?

6. Spring clean – Have a little clean up around the house, it can be so rewarding when you see a tidy space. Have a declutter of some old clothes, take them to charity and feel good that your belongings are being recycled and loved by someone else.

7. Speak to someone – if you are struggling in the Winter months and feel that talking with someone could help, reach out to the nearest professional or service and get the help you need. There are loads of services available online, depending on what kind you require, going online is a really good starting point.

8. Putting on something up-beat! – Do away with the slow songs and ballads…put on something uplifting and happy that makes you feel good! Even sing along! And do the same with your TV choice…go for something happy or funny. The good mood you experience from these can last long after the song/film has finished.

9. Manage your screen time – We all reach for our screens in the colder Winter months. But too much screen time can lower our mood and enhance fatigue. Give yourself planned times in the day where you are actively away from your screens.

10. Plan something to look forward to – If you’ve ever wanted to try a hobby then give it a go. Meeting with an old friend, planning a trip or event can all be ideas as for things to look forward to. It has been known that people who travel get a greater boost of happiness from the anticipation of the trip than from the trip itself!

Try some of the above and see how you get on!

This content is general information only, not advice. If you or someone you know is struggling with a mental health issue, please contact a mental health professional or contact the Samaritans.


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