As the festive season fizzles, the party poppers have popped and there are more pine needles on the floor than on the tree, it’s easy to see why for some January can be a dismal month. Many of us must return to work and the cold, dark and often rainy days don’t induce feelings of joy. That said, we can help ourselves shine through the gloom.
Here’s my tips for avoiding the January Blues
Launch out of bed like a rocket
It’s easy to hit the snooze button on gloomy grey mornings and this can make for a stressful morning when we do crawl out of bed. Take advice from self-help writer Mel Robbins and start the day with a 54321 countdown. When the alarm sounds, count backwards from five and stand up. This simple technique stops the brain from switching into negative mode and thinking of reasons why you should stay in bed.
Boost your vitamin D
Lack of daylight can impact the amount of vitamin D we absorb from sunlight. Vitamin D is important for good health so boost your intake by eating foods rich in the sunshine vitamin. Try a breakfast of scrambled eggs, smoked salmon and some freshly squeezed orange juice for a vitamin D packed boost.
It’s tempting to hibernate when it’s cold outside so consider a challenge to get you out and moving such as walking/running a ‘Marathon in the month.’ Make a visual chart with 26 boxes to represent each mile of the marathon and colour them as you go to help you stay motivated. A marathon in a month is less than a mile each day and it will get you out in to the fresh air and keep you energised. Whatever the weather, wrap up and go anyway.
‘Diet’ is one of the most popular used words in January and whilst you may be keen to banish the post-Christmas bloat, be mindful not to restrict calories too much. Losing weight is a question of creating a small gap between the calories we consume and the calories we burn. A gap of 500 calories is enough to create sustainable weight loss. A calorie deficit greater than this will render you hungry and miserable so choose healthy, nutritious food and eat plenty of it.
Try something new
Having a new focus will help the dark days pass quicker. Rope in your friends and sign up to a tap class. Try a cookery lesson with your partner or engage in a spot of pottery painting with your kids. Hit the search engines and look for new experiences in your area. You’ll get so much out of testing yourself and spending time with friends and family.
Most of all remember that If you think January will be glum, it will be. Start each day telling yourself that today will be amazing. Every evening think of three things you have been grateful for during the day. A positive mind will make all the difference and you’ll be shining your way through the darkness.
As featured in Indulgence Magazine