The summer months seem so much easier, with longer days of seeing light, warm temperatures and the sun giving us that all important vitamin D its so much easier not only look after our mental health, but also physical. In the summer I am constantly downing water and salads are in abundance. But when the darkness rolls in the cold weather whips the air constantly it’s a lot harder. Most mornings having your heart drop because its dark still when you wake up, wearing layers to the max and still feeling cold, it is no wonder a lot of our moods drop during the colder months. Even now, although we’re in the transitional stage to autumn and the days are still warming up I can feel my body begin to struggle. I’m struggle with worry too much again (something I do very little of in the summer) The dark mornings have started and so has my hatred for having to get up and go to work. My skin feels tighter and dry and the house is constantly cold to the point where its thick socks, a dressing gown, two duvets and even then I struggle to bring my hands up from under the duvet as the cold air bites at them constantly.
But this year I have promised myself to try and fight through the low moods I get during these seasons and find ways in how to cope during the cold.
One thing I’m really bad at doing especially in the cold months is being an absolute hermit. If I’ve been outside all day there is nothing I want to do less than go out again, even if it friends.. I can hear my self now saying oh no it’s far too cold in these months to go out. But don’t. Keep social, go out for dinners, drinks, anything that you do with friends. It will keep you happy. But also why not suggest more stay in nights, get a couple bottles of wine or your choice of poison, a good takeaway of some sort and a few films! Or better yet, start a series with your friends. It’s still being social and there is nothing I love more in the winter than to stay all cosy, but why not do it with company? Heck have a girly sleepover if you have one too many drinks, after all you’re never too old!
Now I don’t go to the gym nor do I take part in any classes, but what I mean by keeping active is getting out an about into the light, if you can walk to work. Maybe push yourself to start that gym class you have been telling yourself all year as part of a new years resolution that you would do it. I really want to start yoga, kickboxing of some sort and just getting my strength up (embarrassingly I have really noticed just how little muscle my arms have) Plus these activities can also be done inside so we don’t have to worry about the cold and they can be so beneficial to help keep our bodies moving and our minds at ease. Plus not to mention feeling less guilty for the duvet days we have more often around this time of year.
We get very little light in the autumn/winter, as I sit here writing this I can see the sun is actually slowly starting to go down (the sunsets are 4:30pm currently) That is super early and the light doesn’t come up till 8:00am and for the next few months that time is going to get shorter and shorter. The thought of the light going while I am at work currently sends all sorts of horrible feelings through my body and every morning my body has a little cry that it wakes up. I’m thinking of getting a lumi light from amazon to help with the mornings I think having some light that helps me wake up could be really beneficial. Considering I struggle so much.
The most important thing that I try to do is either find a book series or tv series that I love, makes me feel all warm and cosy and gives me something to look forward to every day. This year I have decided to reread the Harry Potter books, because what else screams cosy?! But it could be any book or any series that you love. In autumn/winter the first tv series that comes to mind? Gilmore Girls! There is nothing more warming in a seasonal theme and heartwarming in general. I love watching Gilmore Girls around now. It’s so easy to watch, plus you don’t need to concentrate on it but it can still make you giggle at the sarcastic humour of Lorelei.
It can be hard when it gets colder just to eat all the comfort food and by all means do it. But don’t stuff yourself with it. Still eat well though. Have stews, soups, pastas, casseroles – sausage casserole anyone! Make them hearty and make them filling. But then also go for the apple crumbles too and if you need that chocolate and hot chocolates well have that too. Make your tummy smile.
I know this sounds like it contradicts what I said on the first tip. But what I mean is when you need days or evening just to get all cosy under the blankets and put tip 4 and 5 into place then do it. There is nothing like hankering down and shutting the world out for a little while. Put the heating or fire on (or if its a little bit pricey) get a hot water bottle and bam ignore the world for a little while. Pretend you’re in a hot country if needs be. Do it by yourself, do it with a friend or partner. Just have cosy days. But just do it all the time, you still need that social life after all.