How to fight the winter blues

Great tips and tricks for fighting the winter depression!

Before I moved to Montreal I used to actually like winter, but now, after another long, icy and apparently newer-ending winter, I’m fighting with the winter blues.

I know I’m not the only one. My cats gained weight and started to fight with each other out of boredom. One of them actually tries to still go out and check his territory, but with the persisting -15C (5F) and beyond he never stays long.

We nearly stopped meeting with friends, because everyone prefers to stay at home. Of course there are the brave ones who still go skiing on -20, but I’m not one of them.

So how do you deal with the fact that everything is covered with ice and snow, and the cold is so persisting that apparently on valentine’s day there was the record of canceled restaurant reservations?

1. Find a winter sport that you like!
Skiing, skating, hokey or slides, anything that motivates you to go outside and move! I don’t know one winter-sports-lover who has to fight winter blues! Unfortunately, I’m not really good in any of them, but I do love watching my kids having fun, so as soon as there is a warmer day ( around – 15 and less) we go out!

2. Develop a new hobby.
Knitting, painting miniatures or binge watching tv series on Netflix. Yes, this one is a total opposition of the first one, but it’s ok. It’ll keep you happy inside. At least for a while.

3. Balance the comfort winter food with healthy food.
Even though all we want on these cold winter days is comfort food, it doesn’t always improve how we feel. On the other hand it’s too cold for salads, so what I suggest are vegetable packed soups and stews. Green tea with honey. Fruit smoothies with chia. You get my point : just balance that cheese with vegetables and fruits and you’ll feel better. I promise.

4. Find your ultimate comfort food.
No, I’m not contradicting myself, I just think that if there is something that you love, that really lifts your spirit, keep it for the coldest months of the year! And keep it for the coldest, darkest moments, so that it would really comfort you when you need it!

5. Socialize!
This one is difficult, when nobody wants to leave the house, but it’s essential in staying sane! If like me, you’re a WAHM, invite others for play dates. If you work, and then all you want is flannel pjs and Netflix, try to overcome your need for cocooning solo, and organize an adult binge watching session.

6. Kiss and cuddle.
With your partner, your kids, a dog or a cat. Physical contact stimulates brain to produce oxytocin, a hormone responsible for bonding and attachment, and in a result reduces stress. So cuddle, hold hands and kiss, it’ll just make you feel happier!

7. You could also just leave.
If you can, that is. A week in the sun and on the beach usually works the best with winter blues! However if you really can’t, start taking Vitamin D, because while we cover our bodies, our bodies stop producing it, and it’s deficit can really affect our mood.

Do you have any other ways of dealing with the winter blues?

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