Winter and its “downs”

Winter can be a challenging season for most of us who live in parts of the world where temperatures go below freezing point and thick and warm clothes are a must for about 3 to 5 months of the year.

January especially brings out the worst of winter: extreme cold weather, harsh winds, heavy snow, shorter daylight time, all of those having a great impact upon our body and mind.

It’s the flu season, the social hibernation for most people who prefer to warm up at home in comfy PJs and watch tv or read a book or play games during the weekends than go outside, meet up with friends for drinks or other outdoor activities.

But it’s understandable and not all people can tolerate winter as well as others.  Especially old people or those who suffer from different illnesses.

It’s ok to make yourself feel as comfortable as you can be and protect yourself from getting sick until Spring arrives with all its shine and glory!

However, until warmer days come, you should also keep in mind not to get overprotective with yourself or too comfortable staying all days indoors.

Due to shorter daylight and a decline in outdoor social actvities, seasonal depression can affect a lot of persons and that can also have a toll on their immune system and social interactions.

So, here are a few tips to keep you in a balanced mood all through wintertime:

  • Indoor physical exercises – if you’re not a gym person and you definetly hate running in the snow, there is always the alternative of at home fitness, aerobics, posture exercises, dancing and so on. Exercise can help boost your mind and body health, keeping you strong and avoid different illnesses (seasonal depression, catching a cold or feeling low and lazy).
  • Start a hobby like painting, knitting, drawing, coloring, do puzzles, keep a journal and so on,  something that keeps your mind focused but also relaxes you. Staying in bed, underneath the sheets waiting for winter to go away won’t help pass the time faster.
  • Read a book (a novel that you postponed since last summer) It’s so entertaining to immerse yourself in fictional plots, letting your mind get carried away and forget all about the gloomy, grey landscapes outside.
  • Indulge yourself in comedyland: there’s no better mood enhancer than laughter! There are studies that demonstrate how laughter can increase the level of “happiness hormones” in our body that help us be in a good disposition and more relaxed.
  • Go outside for a walk at least 30 minutes a day (preferably in a park or less polluted areas around your neighbourhood). It might be cold outside, it might not be so comfortable wearing a whole closet just to brave the winter wind and snow but, you need that half an hour of fresh air and that scarce sunlight.  Ask any doctor and it will tell you that it’s good for your immune system, to improve the quality of your sleep, and for o. Of course, if you are sick or feeling exhausted it’s better to rest and recover.
  • Maintain a steady meal schedule throughout the day, eat lots of veggies and fruits for a healthy mind and body and don’t forget to hydrate yourself with warm tea, fresh juice and room temperature water.  Eating and drinking too cold or too hot can upset your stomach and also the health of your teeth.
  • Invite friends over your place and socialize. Being together with people who make you feel better, share opinions and do fun activities keeps the mind away from melancholy and mental fatigue, some of the symptoms for seasonal depression.

All in all, wintertime is challenging but as any other season it has some good parts also, especially for kids who love to play in the snow!

Photographers can enjoy capturing mesmerizing landscapes.

It’s the perfect time to rest and plan for summer escapades!