Ten Depression Busters for Winter Blues

IFeel free to use this image, just link to www.SeniorLiving.Org  This microstock required lots of post processing to get the blue tint. I also needed a bounce card to  get more detail in the glasses.t’s supposed to be the happiest time of the year, but often, the mix of cold weather, overindulgence and the financial stress of the holidays can leave many feeling the winter blues.

If you are in a seasonal funk, there are a few things you can do to help improve your everyday mood. Check out our Ten Depression Busters, which can help brighten your spirits this holiday season and beyond.

Ten Depression Busters for the Winter Blues

  1. Don’t overindulge. Winter holidays are synonymous with mashed potatoes and gravy, pies, desserts, and alcohol. What you eat and drink can have a huge impact on how you feel, so try to maintain as normal eating patterns as possible so you can feel your best.
  2. Be a do-gooder. It truly is better to give than to receive, and in the midst of the season of giving, there’s nothing like committing to some do-gooder work to make yourself feel better. Giving your service to others creates purpose and mission, both of which are strong fighters against depression.
  3. Get moving. The cold weather can keep us from wanting to do anything, let alone work out. But forcing yourself to get some exercise helps produce endorphins—a strong opponent to depression—and also helps you maintain a positive body image.
  4. Fake the sun. Leaving for work in the dark and coming home in the dark can leave us starving for a little sunlight. When the sun isn’t available, a light lamp or light therapy treatment can help brighten the winter blues. Light treatment can be an effective antidepressant for people with Seasonal Affective Disorder.
  5. Face the blustering cold. Despite the plummeting mercury, getting outside can make you feel better even if it’s cloudy and cold. Turn a negative into a positive by cuddling up in a blanket around an outdoor fire, or enjoying a warm cup of coffee during a snowy stroll. Even when it’s cloudy and overcast, you can still get a good dose of Vitamin D by going outside. It can help boost your limbic system and make you feel better.
  6. Pick up a hobby. The winter is a great time to find an indoor hobby or project. It can be something as simple as organizing an interior space, redecorating, or creating a piece of art. Not only will this help keep you busy, you will end up with a showpiece in your home that makes it a more comfortable and beautiful place to be. Pinterest has great ideas for DIY projects using items you have around the house, so get inspired and get to crafting!
  7. Turn on the tunes. A recent study revealed that listening to upbeat or cheery music can improve your mood. And while playing your favorite tunes, why not “bust a move” —dance! Get two winter blues busters in one.
  8. Find people who make you feel better. Friendship is a natural depression buster. Now is a great time to make an appointment with your real-world counselors—your friends! Surrounding yourself with people who make you happy, help you laugh, and have a cheerful and positive outlook on life can keep you sane in the dreary winter months.
  9. Take a vacation. Longing for sunnier, warmer days at the beach? The dead of winter can be a great time to head south. Not only will this break up the winter, but it also gives you something to look forward to in the weeks following the busy holidays.
  10. Finally, seek the help of a professional if you can’t kick your sad mood. The winter blues are real—what is often brushed off as a seasonal funk could actually be Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD), a treatable disorder that affects many people every year. If you suspect you have SAD, you should seek your medical professional for advice immediately.

 

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