Ways To Beat The Winter Blues

I’m sure we’re all feeling it… It’s half way through January and we’re miserable.

There’s no more fairy lights everywhere, no festive music playing in shops and everybody is either doing Dry January, Veganuary, working off their Christmas body or skint. We’re all depriving ourselves in some way.

I’ve been mourning the loss of sunlight for several months now – I feel like I haven’t seen any daylight in a loooooong time and it’s making me proper blue. (Not to mention very pale!) I’m praying for spring time, just for those extra hours of daylight; walking to work every day in the dark and leaving in the dark is just depressing. Let’s just say, next January I am booking myself a holiday to somewhere SUNNY!

But I am determined to drag myself out of this mindset and do my best to not let these last couple of winter months drag me down. After all, there’s no day but today. You can’t sit around and wait for summer to be happy.

So here’s a couple of things that you could do to perk yourself up in the last of these dark months and make the most of them.

Go out for dinner

Restaurants are cheap at the moment because nobody is out after Christmas. Places such as Zizzi’s and Ask Italian are advertising 50% off vouchers online, plus The Pit does 50% off food every Monday.

So get online and check out what offers are on this month. After work, mid-week, meet your friend for a chinwag and a cheap meal just to pick yourself up. If it’s 50% off it wont break the bank… or you could just order twice the amount of food for the same price. Win, win!

Book a spa day

We’re all dreaming of pools and lying around in luxury so stop waiting for it to be the summer to do it.

There are countless spas around and they all do different packages and deals depending on your price range. My particular favourite, that I’ve used countless times, is Q Hotels. They have hotels in different areas of the U.K and the deals they offer are really reasonable.

I have stayed at Aldwark Manor Hotel in York numerous times, for as little as £99.

At the moment, they have a new year offer for stays in January and February from £105pp which includes your overnight stay, a 60 minute treatment in the spa OR two 30 minute treatments, lunch, your evening meal, breakfast the next morning, access to the pool, gym, sauna, steam room etc. and your robe and slippers to wander around in. The deal if ridiculously good and I’ve never had a bad stay!

So grab your best mate or your partner and treat yo’ self.

Get your friends together and have a dinner party

Back in November I was feeling a bit low and bored, feeling like I didn’t have a social life because all I did was work. So I saw one of my friends was having a ‘pie night’ and sort-of invited myself along. And I’m glad I did because I had a great night!

Everybody brought a little something, whether it was a main dish, or vegetables to accompany, or a dessert or a bottle of wine. This resulted in plenty to go around and nobody was left footing the whole cost. (Plus everybody getting smashed on copious bottles of wine and stuffing our faces with gorgeous pies.)

So arrange an evening to invite your friends round. Have a theme of some kind, whether it be a ‘pie night’ or a ‘Mexican night’ or a ‘Vegan night’ (if you’re doing Veganuary) – whatever you want. Ask everyone to bring something as a contribution and you’ve got yourself a party that won’t cost a lot.

And let’s be real, the best nights are always the ones where you sit at home with your friends and get smashed!

Book a trip

When you’re down, you have to have something to look forward to. So plan where you’re going to go for your big holiday this year or arrange a city break away. The excitement of planning it will keep you busy and get you really excited for going.

Maybe make a list of your top five places you want to go next and then look at how tactically you can do it. Maybe plan one big holiday and then loads of short breaks throughout the year to spread out the excitement. You’ll never get bored if you always have a new place to look forward to going.

I have just been to Prague for a long weekend and have Croatia and Germany planned for later in the year, but still want a little break for somewhere between now and June. Recommendations are most welcome!

Do the wintery things you won’t do soon

Find a pub with a big fire and camp up in front of it, or if you have one at home then even better!

Pour yourself a shot of Baileys and top it up with hot chocolate, then smother it in whipped cream and marshmallows. Grab a blanket and your loved one/dog/hamster/favourite teddy/notepad and just relax. Maybe stick on a fuzzy movie or read your book. Whatever will zone you out – do it.

Soon it will be too hot and you’ll be up and out a lot in the summer, so enjoy these lazy winter nights.

Drag yourself to the gym

I mean, it doesn’t have to be the gym. It can be a yoga class, or a spinning class, or a dance class or join a sports team. Just get yourself up and doing something that will pump endorphins around your body.

Because we’re not getting sunlight and that essential Vitamin D, we need to find other ways to keep our brains happy and exercise is an awesome way of doing that. It will not only make you feel better about your body, but it will help your mental wellbeing and get yourself out of the house.

It’s so easy to go home and just sit around and sleep (don’t I know it!) but it will make you feel better to get up and out. Even if it’s just two or three times a week, it’s way better than doing nothing.

Use this month to be productive

It’s the first month of the year so it’s the month where we set ourselves up for our goals for the rest of the year. So use this time to start off on the right foot.

My want for this year is to be more regular with this blog and reach more readers, so I’m spending this month coming up with a plan of action to make sure I have the time to invest in the running of it and create something I’m proud of and want to update every week.

Use this month to set up the rest of your year, then the rest will just fall into place eventually.

Hang in there! March is just around the corner (sort of) and it will be here before you know it. So make the most of these last months of cosy jumpers, hot chocolates and sitting in front of fires. I bet you’ll be craving them towards the end of summer…

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