Don’t Let the Winter Blues Keep You Down

Beating the winter bluesEvery year when winter rolls around, it means less daylight, colder temperatures and less time spent outdoors. Over the years, I’ve learned that it can also bring on a case of the “winter blues” or little bit of depression.

Unfortunately, there’s nothing we can do about the change in the season. What we can do is change how we look at it.

I learned a long time ago that my only real option was to learn how to live with winter and have fun with it. Kind of a, “If you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em” attitude. Over the years I’ve tried downhill and cross-country skiing, ice skating, sledding, snowshoeing and building snowmen with my kids. I grew to have fun in the winter. And (don’t tell my kids), I actually enjoy using the snow blower to clear snow from my driveway and sidewalk. For me, the snow blower is a toy I get to use every time it snows.

With a little effort, anyone can do the same thing to beat the winter blues. You might not learn to love winter, but you can at least learn how to accept it and live with it.

To keep the winter blues away, get outside! Try some outdoor sports like ice skating, skiing, snowboarding or snowshoeing. An added advantage of being outside during the day is being exposed to sunlight which helps our bodies produce Vitamin D. If you can’t spend much time outside, consider changing some of your light bulbs to “full spectrum” ones that help mimic the sun’s natural light. That extra feeling of sunlight goes a long way when it comes to chasing the blues away.

If you really don’t like the cold and don’t want to be outside, use your time to take care of indoor stuff you don’t do in the summer because you’re busy outside. Use winter as a chance to catch up on movies you’ve been meaning to watch or books to read.

Bottom line? Winter won’t adapt to us – we have to adapt to it. Might as well make friends with Mother Nature – you won’t regret it.

Editor's note: For more information about coping with seasonal disorders, check out this information from our friends at UW Health, or read the February edition of our @dvisor newsletter

by Eric Wolf on Tue, Feb 11 2014 9:42 pm
Posted by Eric Wolf on Tue, Feb 11 2014 9:42 pm


Debra Hermsmeier said on Feb 11, 2014
Great job Eric! I like your perspective that if we can't learn to love the outdoors, make the most of what we need to do indoors. When summer comes those things won't get our attention. On a day when it's -8 I needed this read.
Bill Shepard said on Feb 11, 2014
Nice post, Eric. Instead of letting winter get us down, embracing and enjoying it can make us feel truly alive and enriched. It's not easy, but in most cases, it can be done!
Kim said on Feb 17, 2014
My son loves playing in the snow. Just wish it was better snowman building snow.

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