How I Beat the Winter Blues.
I live in Iowa because I genuinely love it: I can’t imagine life without all four seasons. After the holiday season passes, however, I often find myself struggling with the Winter Blues.
On average, there are 23 days of sunshine total in Iowa from January 1 through March 31. Seriously. The temperature can reach sub-zero & quite honestly, be down right miserable. But there is nothing more magical than waking up to see everything covered in inches of sparkling white stuff & learning that you are, in fact, snowed in for the day!
In spite of loving life in the Midwest, when you combine the fact that I’m cold all the time & the skies are grey almost every day, & it can start to take a serious toll on my mood. This isn’t uncommon… in fact, we all joke about “seasonal depression”… but, it really is a real thing.
In today’s post, I’m sharing with you the tips & tricks I employ to beat the dreaded Winter Blues.
After my husband & my dog, travel is the love of my life. Everything slows down in January: everyone is recovering from the holidays & hibernation mode starts to set in. D. & I have made a resolution to take a trip every month in 2019, big or small, & Q1 is the perfect time for longer getaways! Plus, having a trip on the calendar gives me something to work towards & look forward to. We kicked off the new year in Florida with family; February will bring NYC for Fashion Week & Barcelona at the end of the month… & we have yet to discuss where we’ll go in March, but it is my birthday month! 😉
It’s kind of like that “fake it til you make it” philosophy, except I don’t really care all that much about a real tan & would rather resort to my spray tans all year round. I always feel better with a spray tan! It’s 100% a mental thing, I’m sure… but when I’m met with a healthy glow in my reflection instead of paste-colored skin, how I feel about myself improves. Thank you, Lord, for my Sol Sisters Sunless Tanning!
I double down on my fitness regimen at the beginning of the year, (as does the rest of the world, right?!) My social life slows, so I find myself with a little extra time on my hands. If I don’t fill it I’ll go to bed earlier, which does nothing for depression… so I like to pick up a hot yoga class a night or two every week. Taking the time to center myself, get in touch with my body, & stretch it out (in the heat!) is something I find to help me stay focused & feeling good. & hot yoga is the way to go for me. I need to sweat. I love being warm.
I mean, it is winter in Iowa. I know it’s coming every year & I know it’s going to be cold & grey. Some days, if I can just wrap my head around it & bundle up, forcing myself to put things on the calendar & get out of the house is all it takes. Planning GNO’s & date nights is key. I’m happy at home… I love my home… I’m an extroverted introvert & could easily become a hermit & not care! But my soul needs the socialization, so making plans (& sticking to them!) helps me in a big way.
Seriously y’all… you may have seen my post about this, & you have no idea how much Dry January is testing my sense of will power & self control! My routine this time of year is to come home & immediately ditch the bra, jewelry & makeup… swapping them out for the coziest of sweats, followed by pouring myself an Olivia Pope size class of red wine. I love to curl up in front of the fireplace with a great book, or D. & I’s new “thing” is to play a game of Scrabble.
Netflix, Hulu & Amazon.
We couldn’t live without them in our house. Those snow days I referred to? Every single one of them is spent binge-watching a television series or making our way through the list of movies we’ve been meaning to see. (Check out my to-watch list here.) There’s something so fulfilling about swearing off the rest of the world, making a big pot of chili & snuggling under the covers all day long!