5 Steps to Get Out of Your Winter Slump
From the fall through the spring, many people experience Seasonal Affective Disorder, also known as SAD. Defined by Johns Hopkins Medical as, “a type of depression. It is thought that shorter days and less daylight may trigger a chemical change in the brain leading to symptoms of depression.” SAD can come on quickly for any person, with the potential to affect your mental health and productivity as a business owner. However, you don’t have to simply accept that these will be less productive and enjoyable months of the year! Here are some things you can do to proactively fight against it:
Take Care of Your Body & Mind
You’ve heard Deion Sanders famous saying, “when you look good, you feel good.” I truly believe that as well. However, I also believe it has less to do with how you look from an outward appearance, and more to do with how you feel physically. When you feel better physically, you feel better mentally. Making the investment to care for your physical wellbeing will help you get through your winter with less SAD days.
Though you might be craving comfort foods, put in the effort to fuel your body for your overall health. Be sure to get in those fiber filled veggies, hydrating fruit, lean proteins, whole grains, and lots of water. Then, fill those nutritional gaps with vitamins and supplements to meet your individual needs – as it’s essentially not possible to reach optimum health with food alone.
Next, move your body. It’s all too easy to snuggle up and hunker down this time of year. There may not be as much going as there is in the summer months, but it’s just as important – if not more important – to keep active this time of year. As Newton’s Law shows us, an object in motion tends to stay in motion. Once you start, it becomes easier to keep going. If you’re not in a consistent workout routine, challenge yourself to start something simple. Walk 20 minutes per day, lift weights while you’re watching a show, get those 10k steps in per day.
Lastly, know when it’s time to ask for help. If your mental health struggles are more than you can dig yourself out of, this time of year or any, find a therapist or a medical professional who can help you get back on the right track and feeling better.
I’m not saying alcohol is the answer… I’m just saying I’ve never been sad at happy hour with a friend. Ha! Honestly though, get out of the house and around people who lift your mood! Whether it’s your spouse, bestie, sister, or coworker. It might seem challenging to find time or motivation to set a date night or make plans with a friend, but make time. The payoff will be worth the effort. Taking a break from work, responsibilities, parenthood, etc. to let your hair down and enjoy good conversation and laughs can be amazing medicine for the soul and help you out of your slump. It will be rewarding for you AND whoever you’re with.
Set a Goal… or Two or Three
Nothing will get you out of your own head faster than a distraction, right? And what is more distracting than a new goal to focus on? Whether your objective is health related, business related, home related, or something totally different, focusing on a goal helps occupy your mind. Plus, it’ll get you closer to something important too you! It’s really a win-win.
Fake it ‘Til You Make It
Time spent outdoors is not only good for us mentally, but it provides us with physical benefits as well. My family and I are at this point enjoying the Texas heat this winter, but we have recently moved from Oregon, so I remember the cold winters all too well. If you live somewhere with a less enjoyable climate in the winter, you’re likely getting less outdoor time. Make efforts to get those things you might be missing. A Vitamin D supplement and a sun lamp can do wonders for your mood and immune system, plus it’s said to even lower your blood pressure and aid in weight loss. Also, keeping warm is said to decrease winter blues, so don’t be afraid to layer your clothes and indulge in a hot bath when you’re able! The summer sun will return – so keep the faith!
Having something to look forward to is such a giant mood booster! Help pull yourself out of your slump by making plans for something that fills you with happy anticipation. Plan a summer vacay for your family, a group of friends, or even a solo trip to somewhere exciting. Find an excuse for a party or celebration you can throw. Even better, if it’s possible for you, book a flight to somewhere you’ve always wanted to travel! Making plans will not only give you something to look forward to, but also something to focus on and an outlet for your creative energy!
Are you affected by SAD or still feeling unsure about how to get out of your winter slump? Grab my FREE Life Audit to find the happiness, health, & wealth you deserve! What is your unique spark? Find out now with this freebie!
Lucie Mitchell, CTNC & CTLC
Lucie Mitchell & Company
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