4 Ways of Combatting Winter Blues
I feel like a got a sneak peek of what this winter will look like for Me over the past week while My state was bombarded with remnants of hurricane Ian as it left Florida. For four days straight, the rain poured like sheets. Though My house is warm, because of the symptoms of fibromyalgia, I couldn’t get warm. My bones were cold, not My body.
I found Myself experiencing things and emotions that usually don’t occur until deep into the winter. This fall storm hit Me in every way that it could, physically, mentally, emotionally, and even financially; I found Myself sinking into the winter blues early. During the four days of rain and two days of recovery, I had to constantly find ways to add joy to My day. In case the winter blues are sneaking up on you already, or you just want to prepare in advance, I wanted to share four ways that I combatted the winter blues last week.
Create a peace ritual
When we get overwhelmed or depressed, it’s easy to go down the rabbit hole of what ifs and negative self-talk. I’ve found it cathartic to create a peace ritual, something that you can do at any time that instantly calms and relaxes you. For Me, it’s putting on My tea kettle, going to My tea boxes and picking out a flavor from My large variety then going to the cabinet to see what type of honey I want to use for the day. Once I make a hot cup of tea, the peacefulness of sitting still with it, waiting for it to cool. Gently sipping to see if it still burns My lips until the warm liquid is just right to slide down My throat and warm Me from the inside.
We will not all have the same level of mobility, so there’s no one creative way to beat the blues. However, using our body or mind to create something when we are feeling low gives us not only something to fill our time, but something to feel accomplished in as well. Whether we take the time to crochet, sew, draw, paint, write, sing, dance or in My case, color in coloring books, it releases good endorphins and boost our mood.
One of the worst things that happens to many when depressed, is the act of beating up on oneself. The mind doesn’t mean to antagonize us, it’s trying to make sense of things it doesn’t understand. That may cause your thoughts to race, your mind to become confused and lead to stress and/or anxiety. It’s extremely helpful to get these thoughts out of your mind. Whether you write them down, voice, or video journal, the act of getting the thoughts out of your mind gives you the opportunity to look at or listen to them outside of your head and to see your problems in front of you, instead of just as a part of you. Viewing them in a different way may give you a new perspective on how to handle them.
Talk to Someone
Contrary to how many of us feel when we are suffering through the blues, we are not suffering alone. There’s someone who not only understands and can relate to us, but also, people who are in position to be a resource for you when you’re at your lowest. Myself, I’ve tried therapy, which was extremely helpful, support groups like the free ones through NAMI
(National Alliance on Mental Illness) and the weekly therapeutic writing workshop that I lead. When I was struggling with issues earlier this year, I turned to one of My ministers from church.
How have you combatted winter blues in the past?
What have you found helps you?