How to beat the winter blues

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Ah, wintertime – it can be incredibly magical. But despite all the fabulous winter activities you could partake in, sunshine makes a disappointingly ephemeral appearance, noses becoming a running faucet, and grunting becomes your new greeting. For us students, we also have to face January exams and revise right into the New Year. The winter blues is no joke – when you’re daydreaming about unattainable summer days and picnics, it’s easy for your wellbeing to take a nose-dive. So, here are a few tips to help rejuvenate your once-lively self…

Walking in a winter wonderland

Winter wonderland

There’s no denying: Christmas songs send out great messages, and this one in particular offers some very sound advice. It might feel like the last thing you want to do, but just put on your heavy coat and head out the front door. Not only is it a nice way to sneak in some exercise, but a change of environment will make you feel so much more liberated than huddling inside four walls ever could.

Let there be light!

Winter sun

Unfortunately, we can’t drag the sun out of the clouds to make winter days any sunnier. Bu the good news is that the shortest day of the year (21st December) is now over, so things can only get lighter. However, artificial lighting will do just the trick on a gloomy day – and it’s even backed up by science. There are many gorgeous fairy light patterns, funky lamp designs, and colour-shifting light boxes to choose from if you’re in the market for light therapy lamps.

Get a move on

Gym

Exercise, exercise, exercise. Go to the gym, and even better, buddy up with a friend; this way, you keep each other in check, have good banter, and get a workout in. Or, chuck on a YouTube video and roll out a yoga mat – channels like Blogilates and Fitness Blender are great, and their workouts are adaptable for everybody. It’ll do wonders for your mental health and wellbeing – just wait until the endorphins kick in.

Throw yourself into festivities

Be festive

...while you still can! Because, why not? Michael Bublé crooning in the background, foamy hot chocolate is topped with gooey marshmallows, ugly Christmas jumpers are twinkling (some singing), and you’re surrounded by a bunch of people you love in your life. Now, that sounds like kicking the winter blues in the butt.

Eat hearty, but healthy food

Healthy

It feels like you’re entering hibernation. It’s cold, so you start to stuff in carb-rich foods, like oodles of spaghetti, tasty pastries, bowls and bowls of steamed rice…alas, this’ll be an insulin-spiked nightmare. Maybe it’ll fix your late-night cravings, but feeling bloated and lethargic will definitely not improve your mood. Keep eating fresh, wholesome foods that are highly nutritious to keep yourself marching, not trudging, throughout the day.

But, if you’re really blue…

Winter blues

…please do seek help. Winter blues may pass, but seasonal affective disorder (SAD) is an NHS-recognized type of depression that does require attention. So, if you’re feeling low for whatever reason, don’t forget that you can seek help from your university – find out where on our Mental Health Hub for Students.

Do you have any tips for beating the winter blues? Let us know on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram.

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