Getting over the Winter Blues

Alright so it’s pretty much winter. Once I notice a hint of snow on the ground, I automatically think it’s winter. Not really one of my favorite seasons. It’s just that season where I always say that I’m moving to someplace warm but I’m always still here in the good’ol midwest. I mean yea I pretty much grew up in Minnesota, so I should be used to it now. But it’s just too cold! Always got to be safe while driving in the snow, not in the mood to get out and have fun, always feeling cold even when I’m wearing like 3 jackets, my hair dries up and I always have to moisturize (not to mention I have to constantly lotion my hands because they get dry too). Lastly, I tend to get a little depressed during the winter. According to the Mayo Clinic, the “winter blues” is actually a kind of depression called seasonal affective disorder. I guess my personality just likes the sun too much. But on a serious note, having less daylight leads to our brains producing less mood-enhancing serotonin. This means that it’s producing more sleep-promoting serotonin. Symptoms of seasonal affective disorder includes overeating, loss of energy, sleeping too much, difficulty concentrating and social withdrawal.

I really think it’s important to stay positive during the winter season. Even though for me I know it can be hard to be joyous around this time. Having a nice cup of hot tea helps me relieve some stress and I heard green tea can even help lose weight. When I watching an episode of “The Real” I heard that ginger tea can help with menstrual cramps. Ginger tea works for me sometimes but I usually end up just taking ibuprofen anyway. There’s also this apple cinnamon tea that I get from Whole Foods and it’s really good. It’s probably one of my favorites.

Listening to music is so therapeutic!!! whatever that suits your soul go with it! For me I really like hiphop/pop, R&B and gospel music. I usually listen to classical music when I study. I use pandora usually when studying and with the classical music station. And then I use Apple Music to listen my hiphop, pop, R&B and gospel tunes especially when I exercise.

I can’t stress this enough but TALK TO YOUR FAMILY. Your family knows you better than anyone else on this planet (I hope). And I guess I heard that listening to your parent’s voice can help lower anxiety. At first I found this hard to believe because when I talk to my mom she usually has something to say on whether I should do this or not do this or tell me something that I already know because in her mind I’m still her little girl lol. But really there are days when I just want to hear my mom’s voice after a long hectic day. I feel like no matter how old I am I’ll still always appreciate my parents. My dad still spoils me because I’m his only daughter so I’m lucky. Me and my brother are really close. I usually like to talk to him on Sundays just to see what he’s up to. I also still annoy him even though we’re miles apart. I always cherish the holidays because I really get to annoy all 3 of my brothers and boss them around.

This might be a stretch, but go outside and take a 20 minute walk to catch some sunlight. I was reading an article and I guess it can really uplift your mood. I guess there is really no substitute for natural light. I mean as a college student you’re probably already used to walking to classes in the cold air, so even walking towards the class and walking away from the class may count for your 20 minute walk. It could even be walking towards your job or even the grocery store. Just make sure there is some sun out! I usually walk to my clinical site in the morning and afternoon so it’s beneficial.

Another great tip that comes to mind is that you should try to stay social! Try to make plans with your friends and family on a regular basis. Especially with thanksgiving coming up, “Friendsgiving” has been popular for a long time so if you plan to have an intimate small group of people that you know, have someone designated for assigning who will bring the certain types of meals or people can pitch in what they like to make. Or it may even be a large group of people. Just make sure that everyone can contribute somehow.

As always, thanks for reading my blog post and I hope you can knock out the winter blues effectively with these tips!

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