Christmas is conveniently located during a very depressing time of year.
The days are short, the temperature is low, and the Great British weather is even more miserable than usual.
Luckily, from November onwards we have Christmas and New Year to look forward to.
However, after the festive period is over, we can look forward to nothing but 2 solid months of continued dark winter misery.
This is the dreaded “January Blues” that many of us face.
So this week, to help you cope a little bit, we’ve got 7 tips on how to beat the January blues.
1. Go Outside
Exposure to daylight is good for us, and we often become depressed in darker months due to our limited sunlight exposure.
Our brains love to be in sunlight, and it helps to regulate our sleep cycles properly.
So at lunch, make sure you get yourself outside and get as much daylight as you can while it lasts!
It’s good for you (and will certainly make you more productive)!
2. Avoid Unrealistic New Year’s resolutions
No one likes to be a failure – so you should definitely make sure your New Year’s resolutions are actually achievable!
Don’t say that you’re going to make £1,000,000 next year when you probably won’t. Don’t say that you’re going to lose 7 stone next year if you realistically cannot.
Unrealistic resolutions set you up to fail, and make you feel even worse when you cannot fulfil them.
Making resolutions to better yourself is a good thing, but make sure they’re things you can stick to (this will avoid any disappointment due to slower-than-expected progress – or giving up in January).
3. Try something new
Comfort zones are dangerous things, as they cause us to stagnate and cease development.
So why not welcome in the New Year with some new hobbies or activities?
Push the boat out, per se, and see what you like. You might surprise yourself!
4. Plan a holiday
You know what’s great? Having something to look forward to.
Having something to look forward to fills our day-to-day lives with a sense of purpose, excitement, and joy.
Booking a holiday is the perfect example.
If our miserable weather has got you down in the dumps, why not book a holiday to a tropical paradise where the sun is shining and skies are bright blue!
Scientists say that simply looking forward to a sunny getaway is enough to keep your endorphins (pleasure hormones) flowing strong.
An exciting trip is often the perfect remedy to get you through January’s miserable trudge. I know I’ll be booking something…
The weird post-Christmas period of nothingness that feels like an eternal Sunday is as good a time as any to practice some self-reflection.
That is, after all, why people make resolutions.
If you’re feeling down in January, it may be worth evaluating what could make you happier in your life, as these issues are often brought to the forefront when you’re feeling low.
Are concerned about money? Your health? Your career? Consider ways to better yourself this coming year.
It’s like a resolution in a way, but it’s more in-depth and abstract than “join a gym” and whatnot.
Yes, it’s super clichéd to join a gym come January. However, exercise could be exactly what you need to lift your spirits.
You may not want to go, but science has repeatedly proven that exercise releases endorphins (your body’s feel-good hormones) and lifts your mood after completion.
Not only does exercise naturally lift your mood, you also get the feel less guilty about any Christmas gluttony you may have indulged in!
The only obvious downside to this is that gyms will be packed in January due to all the half-baked resolution-makers, though this will tend to taper off as time goes on.
It may therefore be worth going to the gym at quiet times or taking up exercise in another manner, such as outdoor activities or sports.
7. Remember that calendars aren’t real
To clarify, calendars are real, but the months within them are not. We may associate a lot of concepts and ideas with January (i.e. misery and being skint) but ultimately it is just a time of the year when the Earth is a bit darker than normal.
January, by its very nature, is intrinsically the same as any other artificially-created month. Unfortunately, it’s still cold and dark, which doesn’t help cheer us up!
Just try to treat January like September, or any other similar month.
We hope these hints and tips will keep you in good cheer this January.
If there’s one thing you should remember it’s this: your happiness is down to you. If you commit yourself to being unhappy this month, you will be.
If you do something about the January blues, you can and will get yourself through it positively and happily!
Do you have any tips for beating the dreaded January blues?
What do you do the get through this miserable time of year?
Let us know your tips and tricks!
You can reach out to us in the comments below, or via our Twitter page.