It's thought the winter blues, or seasonal affective disorder (SAD), affects around 2 million people in the UK and more than 12 million people across northern Europe. It can affect people of any age, including children.
Key symptoms of SAD include:
- sleep problems
- feeling down and unsociable
We can’t turn winter off so what can we do to beat the blues?
Getting 20 minutes of vigorous exercise four times a week has been shown to help reduce a depressive mood. This is not always easy as you may not feel like doing any exercise but don’t worry, this is where family and friends come in. Ask someone you know to help you get active, do it together and tell them not to take no for an answer when you aren’t feeling it. Getting active could include going out for a nice walk, jog or bike ride.
Go outside and enjoy as much natural daylight as possible. Exposure to natural light helps our bodies produce Vitamin D, improves our circadian rhythms and sleep patterns, helps us to focus, enables us to get more done, and even makes us happier. Ensuring we get enough of this vital resource is key to our physical and psychological wellbeing.
We may all be feeling the effects of the cost of living crisis at the moment but it is so important to keep yourself warm and comfortable. Just think how you feel when walking into a warm room after a chilly walk in the snow. If you can’t afford to have the heating on as much as you would usually invest in a nice snuggly blanket or dressing gown.
Hands up if you DIDN’T over indulge over the festive season. I didn’t think many hands would go up 😂I am by no means telling you to go on a diet but maybe just be a little more mindful of what you are eating. A healthy diet will boost your mood, give you more energy and stop you putting on weight over winter. Balance your craving for carbohydrates, such as pasta and potatoes, with plenty of fresh fruit and vegetables.
Start a new hobby
Most of us are quite comfortable with our daily routines, we don’t like taking risks or change. But, why not take a risk, push yourself out of your comfort zone and do something a little different. Start a new hobby, join a club or attend a workshop. Not only will you meet new people you will also learn new skills and potentially discover a new passion for something. We took a massive leap into the unknown and financial risk when I left teaching after 16 years and opened a shop! And although the risk was great the health benefits have been huge!!!
At The Brown Box we are planning and delivering a number of workshops to run throughout the year so if you fancy trying something new or a little different then keep your eye on our socials.
We have a Polymer jewellery workshop coming up and a Body Shop party evening. Last year we hosted 2 Pop Art workshops, a festive themed Sea glass workshop, stories with Santa and Wreath making. These sessions are held in our beautiful coffee shop which offers an intimate, relaxed and friendly environment.