Staying upbeat during the winter can be tough. For almost all of us Canadians, we’re vitamin D deprived (aka “happiness” vitamin deprived). Personally, seasonal affective “disorder” really impacts me, so I’ve prioritized some habits to ensure I stay motivated during these darker months. Here’s what works for me.
Ways to Stay Motivated During the Winter
- Exercise. So cliche, but it really does help! I have to exercise to stay sane, even if I don’t want to. During winter months, I like doing indoor activities like hot yoga or going to the gym, but if I have the proper attire, I’ll go snowshoeing, skiing, for walks, or running too. Just do it. – Nike.
- Get enough sleep. I cannot stress how important enough sleep is. I rave about it all the time. Check out my top 5 sleep tips for proof.
- Stay social! It’s easy to want to hole up in your house watching Netflix (at least it’s easy for me). While Netflix is a great, great thing, to stay motivated during colder months, try seeing your loved ones every once in awhile. Whether that’s coordinating a book club, going for a drink, or starting a salad club with your work friends, be sure to see your pals every so often.
- Eat well. I’m uber-hungry during winter months. That’s not a problem if I’m eating foods that fuel my body, but sometimes I’ll resort to fast food or a gargantuan bowl of popcorn for dinner (secretly no regrets though). Enjoy satisfying, filling meals and snacks like this low-sugar smoothie or a Fat Bomb. For recipe inspiration, try browsing cookbooks. Another tip is to make a large amount of food (like curry, stews, or even oatmeal) and freeze or refrigerate the extras! You’ll be set for meals all week.
- Self-care. There’s a lot of talk about self-care in the media these days. You probably hear about having a bath or doing a face mask. While these are awesome, there are tons of other self-care methods out there! Whether that’s making a meal, baking, reading, going to a museum, biking, listening to music, crafting – whatever. Do what you enjoy. If you don’t like baths – no problem (some people don’t like soaking in their filth) – just make sure to prioritize it!
- Book an excursion. This doesn’t have to be big (we’re not all made of money here). Just plan a trip or maybe some little events to break up the winter. Whether that’s a camping trip, a vacation to a warm climate, a weekend getaway, or even training for an organized sports race, plan something that excites you.
These are favourite tips. I also sometimes use a “happy light” (although I’m still skeptical on this one) and other tricks too, but the ones above are my more successful habits. Hopefully, they work for you too! If you have other suggestions on how to stay motivated, let us know! The more ideas, the merrier.