Beating the "January Blues"
January can feel like the gloomiest month of the year. Add to that cold weather, short days, Christmas debts and now inevitably seeing less of friends and family, and it's no surprise that people can find themselves feeling miserable and low.
Here are some suggestions to help banish the blues.
Make the most of the daylight
While it might not always seem appealing due to the cold weather, being outdoors in the sunlight can make you feel better and give you more energy. Exposure to natural light increases the levels of serotonin in the brain, which is associated with improved mood.
One of the best ways to improve wellbeing and mood is to get some exercise. A brisk walk with a friend can be a great way to get some fresh air and release endorphins which will make you feel better.
What we put in our bodies can make a huge difference to our mood. When feeling down, you are more likely to eat poorly, and either eat too much or too little. Having a varied, balanced diet can work wonders to improve your mood.
Get enough sleep
Poor sleep can have a negative impact on your mental health and lead to you feeling irritable, anxious and worried.
Identify your worries
Try and identify what it is that is making you feel anxious or sad. Remember, there is nothing wrong with asking for help. Sharing how you are feeling with family, friends or somebody you trust can often be the first step towards making things better. Please find a list of organisations that may be able to help at the bottom of this article.
Get lost in a good book
Reading for pleasure is a great way to take your mind off how you are feeling.
Be kind to yourself
Many people set unrealistic New Year resolutions and then feel a sense of deflation and failure when they cannot keep them. Remember to slow down and make some time for yourself.
Be tech smart and switch off
Being constantly connected to technology can negatively impact your mood. Switching phones and tablets off at least 90 minutes before you go to bed can help you to relax, feel less anxious and get a good night’s sleep.
Learn something new
Do something new. Sign up for that online course. Take on a new responsibility. Fix a bike. Learn a new recipe or how to play an instrument. Set a goal. Learning something new can be fun, make you feel good and build your confidence