Baby, it’s cold outside! When temperatures plummet, so do moods. As days get shorter, so do tempers.
Staying sunny during the gloomy days of winter takes effort and planning.
“So many of us are affected by the lack of sunshine in the wintertime. People tend to feel a little blue, more stressed out and less inclined to exercise, socialize and eat healthy fresh food,” says Dr. Joey Shulman, of drjoey.com.
Don’t hibernate. Instead get a natural high by staying active, eating right and tending to your wellbeing, says Shulman, a registered nutritionist.
“Along with not getting enough vitamin D, the lack of light negatively impacts our wellbeing,” she says, adding that seasonal affective disorder (SAD) hits approximately 15% of Canadians and leaves them feeling sad, irritable and suffering mood swings.
Boost your feel-good hormones, with these tips from Shulman:
• Regular cardiovascular exercise and lifting weights.
• Exposure to sunlight when it is available or consider sun lights.
• Dress warm and get outside! It’s critical to get fresh air as often as you can.
• Avoid white sugar and white flour.
• Eat enough good omega 3 fats, such as fish oils, chia seeds, almonds, walnuts and oily fish, like salmon.
• Limit alcohol consumption.
• Load up on warming herbal teas and green tea. Green tea secretes an amino acid called l-theanine which causes you to feel alert and calm at the same time.
Hype up your happiness quotient with these strategies:
• Count your blessings and express gratitude for what you have
• Cultivate optimism
• Avoid overthinking and social comparison
• Practice acts of kindness
• Nurture relationships
• Do activities that engage you
• Replay and savour life’s joys
• Commit to your goals
• Develop strategies for coping
• Learn to forgive
• Practice religion and spirituality
• Take care of your body – get active
- Courtesy of Dr. Sonja Lyubomirsky, author of The How of Happiness (Penguin Press).