It is that time of year again. With it’s short days and colder temperatures, it’s easy to feel the blues during the winter season. The holidays are over and there is not much to look forward to. Maybe you’ve already botched your New Year’s resolution. Maybe you are just not feeling motivated to tackle that work project. Maybe you’ve noticed how irritable you are with your family. Maybe it’s not you. It is not uncommon to feel sad, irritable, or lethargic during the winter months. Below are some of my favorite things you can try to help kick the seasonal blues.
Eat Berries and Dark Chocolate
Blueberries, raspberries, and strawberries may help prevent the release of cortisol, a hormone produced by the adrenal gland during stressful times. Cortisol and stress have lasting negative effects on your body. Keep berries on hand for meals or as a snack.
Dark chocolate is another tasty way to self-medicate when feeling low. Dark chocolate is full of polyphenols, a type of antioxidant. Polyphenols have been shown to significantly improve one’s mood. The higher the cocoa content, the better!
Take a Vitamin D Supplement
Vitamin D is known as the “sunshine vitamin” because your body can absorb it from natural sunshine. As little as 10 minutes of sun exposure can help to improve your mood. This can be harder to do during winter months.
You can also get your daily intake of vitamin D through food. Milk, egg yolks, mushrooms, red meat, and oily fish, such as salmon, sardines, herring, and mackerel, are good food sources of vitamin D. Another option is to get vitamin D in a supplement form.
Use a Wake-Up Light Alarm Clock
I recently purchased a wake-up light alarm clock and have noticed a significant change in my mood in the morning. This is an alarm clock, but instead of loud music or beeping waking you up, it simulates the sunrise by using light that gradually increases in intensity. Different models of wake-up light alarm clocks are available, but the best ones use full-spectrum light which is closest to natural sunlight. I purchased this one from Amazon and am impressed by how it’s made mornings more tolerable for me.
Take a Walk
Exercise is a great way to improve your mood. Outdoor exercise is most helpful because you will get vitamin D from the sun and connect with nature, plus you can include your four-legged friends! If exercising outdoors is not an option due to weather conditions, doing something inside close to a window would be adequate. Whether you are at home or at the gym, find some form of exercise that gets your blood pumping and your body moving.
Nurture Your Spirit
Take the time to do what you love. Whether that means curling up with a good book, writing in your journal, listening to music, or calling a friend. Just slow down and breathe. I find that I drink more hot tea in the winter. There is just something about sipping a hot beverage that brings about calm and peace.
About Office Evolution Cedar Rapids
At Office Evolution Cedar Rapids, we provide virtual office, coworking, and private office solutions at our shared office center. We offer meeting rooms, offices for rent, hot desking in a shared workspace coworking lounge, a shared reception, a business address, and virtual receptionist services. We have many options and price points, and all terms are flexible. Plus, you become part of a community of like-minded professionals.
Whether you live in Cedar Rapids, Marion, Hiawatha, Palo, Robins, Iowa City, North Liberty, Coralville, and other communities nearby in Linn County, choosing Office Evolution Cedar Rapids will help you be more professional, productive, and profitable.
Written by: Melissa Miller
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