Thursday, January 9, 2014

Feeling alive, when all you want to do is stay home during the cold

In the midst of bringing in the New Year, I have found myself spending more and more time in the comfort of my own home.  Now, this could be mostly to do with the fact that there has been loads of snow here in the Midwest, but I also find it quite relaxing and comforting during these cold months to enjoy being home.

In this week's post, I wanted to address seasonal affective disorder (SAD for short).  It is a very real part of life especially in areas that do not get an abundance of sunshine during the winter.  Some symptoms of this "disorder" include depression, lethargy, tiredness, or even mood swings.  I really don't like that it is called a disorder though because that makes it sound worse than it really is.  Those symptoms are not fun to deal with, but they can be prevented and even reversed if the correct precautions are made.

If you are in a colder climate where the sun does not really shine all that much during particular times of the year, some of these tips might help you to feel better:

  • Make sure you are getting vitamin D every day whether that be from fortified foods or a supplement
  • Exercise to reduce stress and increase endorphins (feel good hormones)
  • Drink at least half your body weight in ounces of water (ex. a 150 lb person would need 75 ox water per day)
  • Try to be by a window to see the daylight as much as possible.  This will help balance your circadian rhythm (inner clock), making sleep patterns consistent and deep.
  • Write down some things you are thankful for or a fun thing that happened that day every night before you go to sleep or right when you wake up.  This will help to keep a positive perspective and help you to feel more happy throughout the day.
The overall point of this post is to help you feel alive during the cold winter.  It is so easy to wrap up stay by yourself during these dark cold months, but if you make an effort to go outside and enjoy it the winter will be over before you even know it.

So, think of the warm sun and enjoy the snow while you can.  Please leave a comment about one of your favorite things to do in the winter that keeps you happy.

Luana ola!