Five easy ways to feel happier this winter
If winter gets you feeling down, you might find that taking a new approach can help to keep a spring in your step through the colder months. According to experts, reframing the way you think and talk about winter can be beneficial for your health and wellbeing – and help you begin to enjoy the season.
Clinical psychologist Dr Tracey Zielinkski says changing the way you think about the cold can stop a downward spin of negative thoughts and show you a whole different side to winter.
“If you tell yourself that you hate winter, then your emotional response as winter falls is to naturally start feeling down,” she says. “If you then also stop engaging in activities because it’s cold or dark, that can lower your mood further. Reframing your thoughts can stop you falling into this spiral and perform virtual miracles.”
Beat the blues this winter and try these five easy approaches to keeping a positive mindset and feeling happier when temperatures start to drop.
Change your language
Swap saying “I hate winter” and “I can’t cope with the cold” with a less all-or-nothing statement such as “It’s not my favourite season” and “I struggle with the cold”. When you phrase your feelings in this way, it gives you a way to respond with solutions. Being proactive helps to keep you feeling positive and motivates you to come up with ways to keep yourself warm and avoid the cold.
Celebrate the little things
Think about every little thing that brings you joy in winter. It might be the warm winter coat that you love to wear or snuggling under a blanket in the evening. Celebrate those moments, and whenever you find something that brings you pleasure during winter, focus on it for a little while and enjoy the positive thoughts.
Brighten up your home
Keep your home bright and full of light. Clean the windows, open the curtains and turn lights on when you can. Increasing your exposure to sunshine everyday can also help banish your blues. If you find your mood significantly impacted, light therapy could be helpful for you. All you need is a light box to shine on you for half an hour or more every day. Light boxes emit an intense light that resets your body clock and reduces negative symptoms.
Create a cosy space
Buy a fluffy blanket, treat yourself to some new books or DVDs, or make a Zoom date with friends or family who live a long way away. It’s likely you’ll spend more time indoors during winter, so make your home a welcoming, cosy retreat that you love to spend time in.
Mindfully reflect on the changing seasons
Without winter, we wouldn’t have the burst of colour and life that makes spring so enchanting. The slower pace of winter makes it the perfect time to start a nature journal. It can be meditative to observe how the world changes around you as the months pass. If it snows where you live, think about how beautiful each snowflake is. When trees lose their leaves in autumn, admire the colours as they change and in spring, watch the new, green leaves grow. Even the sound of winter rain on the roof and over your garden can be relaxing.
We can help you make changes to feel happier this winter
What makes you feel happy and lifts your mood in winter? Your KinCare Customer Care Manager is always available if you need to talk, and will help you find ways to feel happier this winter. Perhaps a change in your home, a big spring clean or more opportunities to connect with family and friends will help give you a mood boost and recharge your energy. We can help with all that and more.