Health Care, Mind, Wellness

Here’s the winter care package you didn’t know you wanted

Got the winter blues? Welcome to your sweater weather fix.

For those of us in the northern hemisphere, it’s that time of year – the weather is getting colder, the trees are shedding their leaves and the days are getting shorter. Along with these changes, it a lot of people can find themselves experiencing a shift in their mood and a drop in their overall energy levels. This change in mental pace and is colloquially known as the “winter blues.”

Unlike Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD), the winter blues is not a medical diagnosis. It’s fairly common and exhibits much milder symptoms, often over a shorter period of time. Nonetheless, it has very real effects and can keep people from enjoying the winter months to their fullest.

If you’re finding yourself staying bed a little (or a lot) longer than usual and are struggling to find the energy to take care of yourself, have no fear – we have got your back. Welcome to your winter care package!

Food and Drink

Nothing (and I mean nothing) is better than snuggling up with a steaming mug of hot chocolate when it’s cold outside. 

Feel a sniffle coming on? Or just craving something simple and warm for dinner? Chicken Noodle Soup is the answer.

They’re delicious, and their seasonally aesthetic. For those of you that have a sweet tooth, spend the evening baking chocolate snow-top cookies.

Winter is all about comfort food, but that doesn’t rule out salad.

I say this every year, and I’m going to say it again. I. love. mulled wine.

I don’t know about you, but when it gets colder outside, I get hungrier. What’s more satisfying (and filling) than a war winter stew?

Books

The Gemma Doyle Trilogy by Libba Bray

American Gods by Neil Gaiman

A Little Life by Hanya Yanagihara

Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance by Robert Pirsig

Underneath the Scarlet Sky by Mark T. Sullivan

Movies

Cold weather is the perfect excuse to just stay in and watch a movie. From chick flicks and documentaries, to mind-bending thrillers and five-hour-long classics. I’ve got you covered: 

Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind

The Butterfly Effect

While you were sleeping 

Sleepless in Seattle

Gone with the Wind

Dances with Wolves

Obvious Child 

Celeste and Jesse Forever  

Two week’s notice

Arrival

Before Sunrise 

March of the Penguins

The Kindness Diaries 

Planet Earth I and II

Donnie Darko 

Dallas Buyer’s Club

Love Actually

The Nightmare Before Christmas

Any and all of the Harry Potter movies

Activities

Winter is the perfect season to spend some quality time with family and friends. Here are some fun ideas on what to do when you get together with loved ones.

Game night – nothing like a good game of Scrabble or Monopoly to add some healthy rivalry to a quiet night in.

Dinner party – get everyone to bring their favorite seasonal dish!

Movie marathon – not trying to pressure you or anything, but LORD OF THE RINGS.

Slumber party – you should totally build  a fort.

Spa day – face masks, manicures and of course, undeniably and unequivocally the best part…brushing each other’s hair.

Bonfire night – light a fire, roast some marshmallows, tell some stories and make sure to invite someone who can play Wonderwall.

Self-care

Stay active – exercise will help you stay healthy and boost your energy levels. Try out some yoga or take up a winter sport.

Go for walks – I know this may sound like its a terrible idea given its winter. But its important to get fresh air and enjoy the sun whenever you get the chance to.

Stay hydrated – you’re probably sick of hearing this, but seriously, stay hydrated. People can forget to drink enough water during the colder months of the year, and dehydration only add to the lethargy.

Enjoy warm baths – treat yourself to a bath bomb and a bottle of your preferred beverage.

Music

Regardless of how you decide to spend this winter, you’re gonna need some sick tunes to play, so o top it all off, I’ve put together an extensive Colder Weather playlist.

It can be difficult to get inspired to do things when it’s cold outside – it’s so easy to just veg out on the couch and scroll through twitter and Instagram. Not this year. Put your phone down, crank up the volume on that winter playlist and enjoy the season.

 Got a friend feeling the winter blues? Pass it on!