February is a dark month, I find. Spring feels a zillion years away, and fall is barely a memory. It seems like the world will always be and always has been buried under snow. Even the wind is mean and bites at you if you expose your skin to it. It’s no wonder so many people find themselves inexplicably down this time of year. Here are some Winter Emotional Survival Tips to help you manage til the snow melts. 🙂
Especially relevant since we have a wind chill of -28 right now….sigh.
1- Comfort Food! It’s the perfect time of year to cook something slow on the stove or in the oven. When you are trapped inside you might as well have something simmering away. Also cooking something fragrant and delicious makes your home smell great and the comfort of a good meal on a cold night can’t be beat. You don’t need fancy expensive ingredients either to make excellent comfort food. One of my favorites is homemade tomato sauce cooked for an entire afternoon, all you’ll need are tomatoes, an onion, garlic, and spices. It’s cheap and the batch of sauce can be frozen or served to a group.
2- Craft or Mend! Keep your hands and mind busy to keep from dwelling on how cold and crappy you feel. Making easy crafts to beautify your home or your outfits is really satisfying as you end up with a tangible item from your efforts. Or mend the items in your closet you’ve been meaning to since summer- resew buttons, mend loose seams, or embroider cute things onto older pieces. (All of our DIY inspiration is here)
3- See Friends In Real Life! It’s easy to hide in your burrow to avoid the snow and cold, but it gets lonely. Make sure you keep in-person touch with your friends and see them as often as possible. Maybe have them over for pasta or go enjoy the season by skating, sledding, see a dumb movie, or visit an art gallery together. That way everyone is distracted from the foul weather and you’ll feel better too.
4- Exercise! It boosts your mood and you don’t need a gym or class membership (unless that’s your jam). A walk in the woods (properly bundled) or even just dancing around your apartment can help shift the winter blues a bit. It’s hard to feel motivated to exercise when it’s so cold, but it really does help. Winter can be a great time to find the local community pool near you or to take a cheap yoga or dance class at the Y.
5- Learn Something New! Again, you’re trapped inside you might as well do something productive. Whether you want to learn to make hats or how to code html, there are tons of free tutorials for all of that on youtube and your local library is sure to have books. Use the shut-in season to add a new skill or hobby to your repertoire, it can make you feel productive and accomplished (and less crappy to boot)!
6- Dress Up! It helps to look your best when you feel down, even if it’s the hardest to put the effort in at those times. You don’t have to live in sweaters and boots only this season. Layer up your favorite dress and tights with a warm cardigan or just wear it around the house. Knowing you are wearing your favorite style can lift your spirit a little extra.
How are you managing this icy season? 🙂