Winter can be difficult for many of us. Goodbye to sun-kissed days and hello to pale skin and 4 p.m. sunsets. Through the years, I began to notice how my mental health declined as thermometer did. This year, I’m determined to do something about it. Here are some tips on how to still engage in self-care during the winter months.
Create a Cozy Ambiance
I realized quickly that even though I hate when it gets dark out early, I may as well make the most of it. Instead of dwelling, I created an ambiance in my home that makes me excited for nighttime. My roommates and I put up fairy lights and even got a small four-foot Christmas tree. Now when the sun goes down, we have our cozy living room to look forward to. I find myself enjoying that part of the day, when a year ago it used to fill me with dread. If you don’t celebrate Christmas or don’t want to get a tree, candles will do the trick perfectly.
Wake Up Early
If you need something a little more than a cozy ambiance, I recommend waking up earlier so you’re awake for a bigger chunk of daytime. Research has shown there are numerous benefits to being an early-bird: an increase in productivity, healthier eating habits and more. If you do decide to wake up earlier, make sure you adjust your nighttime routine so that you are guaranteed seven to nine hours of sleep.
I absolutely love to treat myself in the warm months, but why not also in the winter? Just because we’re more bundled up, doesn’t mean we can’t show ourselves love. For me, I enjoy taking myself on mani-pedi dates with myself. Yes, my feet are in Uggs the whole time, but they deserve to be pampered too. If you’re ballin’ on a budget, taking a bath or even giving yourself a facial massage will create the same relaxing sensation. While my self-care often has to do with taking care of my exterior, treating yourself can include cooking yourself a meal that you put extra time into, buying your favorite groceries, taking time to watch a film on a school night and more.
Another way to get into the winter mood is creating traditions that can take place during the colder months. When I was younger, I used to always make a snowman during the first snowfall. Taking advantage of the superb sledding hill that is right on campus is also an amazing idea. Rather than wallowing inside about how cold it is, go outside and take advantage of the chilly, beautiful weather. Bundle up and stop to look at the snowflakes. Grab a cup of hot cocoa and read your favorite book. Watch holiday movies all winter long. The options are endless.
With all that being said, it’s normal to feel a bit more down during the winter months, but hopefully these tips will help you out.