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Thursday, January 15, 2015

30 Ways to Think Outside the SAD Box this Winter | Part Three

Thanks for tuning into the whole series on beating the winter blues! I've been so encouraged and inspired by all the comments and great ideas. Thank you for joining in the conversation and helping spread the word about SAD!

This is not a comprehensive list, but I feel like we're all pretty well prepared to make the last few months of this winter less of a bummer.

Without further ado, the last ten tips from yours truly... 

21. Brew a hot cup of your favorite tea. Just putting your tea kettle on the stove can improve your mood. The cozy feeling of a warm beverage in your hands is one of the many ways to warm yourself up. Inside and out! (Bonus points if your tea kettle is bright yellow like the one My Love got me!)

22. Plan a vacation. Really research it and get into it... even if it's not going to happen for awhile. They say that the anticipation, planning, and daydreaming about a vacation actually gives us more pleasant satisfaction than the vacation itself! I'm not entirely sure that it's true, but I can't argue that it's not amazing to have something fun to look forward to. I just got a Lonely Planet Travel Guide to Thailand. I don't know exactly when we're going to take that trip, but we both really want to. And reading about it, getting ideas, and looking at beautiful photos will help me feel like I'm already halfway to a new location! Far far away from these grey skies!

23. Take a hot bath with your favorite calming essential oils or a fabulous bubble bath. Don't underestimate the power of pampering yourself on a daily basis. Take the time to breathe deep and really relax. Take the time to put on a luxurious lotion from head to toe after. Put your jammies on the heater to warm up (or in the dryer) and wrap yourself up all nice and cozy before bed!

24. Spend $10 on something you don't really need. New makeup, nail polish, hair accessory, scarf, jewelry, etc. Anything that makes you smile. Even if you already own 30 scarves. or more. Not that I would know anything about that.

25. Commiserate with someone else who struggles with seasonal depression. Be careful with this one... you certainly don't want to fall into the "misery loves company" camp. But it sure is nice to know you're not the only one feeling like this! Follow me on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram and join the TABA community discussions about looking for the silver lining in these dark winter months!

26. Start a collection of wool socks. And maybe a nice pair of slippers, too. But definitely fuzzy, cozy socks. As many as you need to last between laundry days.

27. Make some of these easy rice cozies to warm you up on cold winter nights. Here's a tutorial I found on Pinterest. I made the girls each a large one in their favorite color for Christmas. Every night, as part of the bedtime routine, I warm them up in the microwave before stories. I will sometimes heat them up and put them in my lap or behind my back while I work at the computer at night.

28. Give yourself some downtime to do something silly. I like to sit under a blanket on the couch and color in a "for Mommy only" coloring book. The smell of crayons and the soothing, childish nature of "wasting time" coloring always brings a smile to my face and helps me relax.

29. Start conversations with strangers. I was just reading in Health magazine that people who talk to strangers report having more pleasant commutes or better experiences while out shopping! I can attest to this, since I have a tendency to talk to anyone with a pulse. I just love to make the long boring waits in the pharmacy queue or the grocery store less tedious by striking up conversation with someone. It helps me feel like the world is a happier place just knowing that two strangers were able to chat and laugh together for a few minutes!

30. Talk to your doctor about meds if you need them. It's hard for people to admit sometime that they need medication. I know it was for me! But you might need it. Between anxiety issues and depression issues, I've had a very good run with Zoloft and vitamin D this year. My doctor is amazing and very supportive. I wanted to be able to muscle my way into mental health or "just stop" feeling bad. But the human body is a very complicated thing and sometimes you need modern medicine to get it back on track. Don't be ashamed to say you can't do it on your own. And don't make yourself suffer needlessly for years, for whatever reason. It's not worth it!

You're not in this alone! 

We all have to deal with varying levels of the winter blues. There are so many ways to
make winter work for you. Please tell me in the comments if you have any other things you do to lift your mood during the winter months!

I'm all ears for more tried and true tips and tricks!

1 comment:

  1. #26 for sure. I always say that it is hard to be cheerful when you are cold. I dread the time at night between when I take off my wool sweater and socks and when the bed finally warms up.