As the days get shorter and darker, you may find yourself feeling more tired, cranky or lethargic than usual. We’ve put together a list of tips and tricks to avoid the winter blues, and how to keep both our physical and mental health strong.
TIP 1: GET YOUR VITAMINS 🍊
Vitamins play a key role in maintaining balance in your mood and overall health, and are especially important in winter (when our immune systems are usually at our lowest). Here are three ways to make sure you're getting plenty of Vitamin B, C and D!
- Simply eating your veggies is an easy way to get plenty of Vitamin B. The Vitamin B complex family works to keep your body running efficiently and helps you convert essential nutrients to fuel (so that you can groove through your busy life). Make sure your plate is filled with dark leafy greens, legumes, brown rice, seeds and nuts.
Need some inspiration? Here are 10 plant-based recipes rich in B-Vitamins.
- Although winter means cooler temperatures and shorter days, try to catch some warm sunlight whenever you can - as regular sun exposure is the most natural way to get enough Vitamin D. Vitamin D is important in maintaining healthy blood levels, bones, a functioning immune system and happiness levels. Recommended time in the sunshine is around 20 minutes, depending on your skin type. Stuck inside working or studying? Opening blinds and curtains, trimming back tree branches, and sitting closer to windows can also help provide an extra dose of sunshine.
- We all know Vitamin C is important to fight off the flu and colds this winter, but have you considered your skin? Topical Vitamin C is one of the most potent antioxidants available and helps the skin fight the effects of oxidative stress and free radicals by neutralising damaging molecules. In simple terms - Vitamin C fights off environmental damage (like sun, wind and pollution damage) to help prevent the signs of ageing and dull winter skin. Yes please.
Byron Bay Skin Care has your Vitamin C intake covered. Use our Vitamin C+ Serum daily - to rejuvenate cell growth, smooth and restore moisture and create a brighter, firmer complexion. Vitamins for healthy looking skin!
TIP 2: EXERCISE (FOR THE BRAIN) 💪
Although hibernation is a tempting thought during winter - don’t forget that exercise has many benefits, not only for your physical health, but your mental health too. In your brain, exercise stimulates chemicals like endorphins and serotonin that improve your mood and have been proven to reduce any feelings of loneliness or isolation. Regular exercise can also be used as a recovery method from mental health issues, helping to reduce stress, depression and anxiety.
In case you needed any more reasons to get moving - exercise also pumps blood to the brain which makes us think more clearly, while also increasing the size of the hippocampus (the part of the brain responsible for memory).
TIP 3: GOOD COMPANY (+ START A WINTER TRADITION) 🎈
Another method of combatting the winter blues is surrounding yourself with good company. Science has proven that human beings are ultra-social species. According to biology, neuroscience and psychology, our bodies actually tend to function and work better when we are not alone. Plus, a lack of social support can directly affect our potential for experiencing happiness, as we naturally seek social companionship and understanding.
So, make sure you schedule in lots of time with friends and family. While you may have a lot of social traditions that surround the
December holidays, why not transfer some of those ideas to winter? Try starting a weekly board game night on Fridays, or a monthly cooking club. Any meaningful activity will help you feel closer to others, and beat those blues.
TIP 4: SELF CARE 🛀
Make sure you are making some time for yourself to recharge. It’s common to feel pressured to get everything done during the shorter daylight hours, which can leave you stressed and fatigued. We often do not spend enough time doing the things we really enjoy. Although there is no quick fix for stress, take some simple steps to help reduce it.
- Take some time to simply breathe. Sounds easy right? It can be more difficult than you think, but the benefits are worth it. Studies have shown that by meditating 10 minutes per day, you can help control your stress, decrease anxiety, improve cardiovascular health and achieve a greater capacity for relaxation. Some even believe it leads to more glowing skin! Our favourite app is Head Space.
- Take some time away from technology. Although technical advancements have made our life more convenient in some ways, it unfortunately has not improved our mental health. We’re not saying you can’t watch Netflix - but try setting some boundaries during certain times of the day that you are dedicated to being electronic free. Sit in the garden for 15 minutes without your phone while you eat lunch, or read for 20 minutes before bed instead of being on your computer. Less screen time and more green time has proven to increase our happiness levels!
- Create a routine that is dedicated to only you. We spend so much time dedicated to school, university or work - that sometimes we forget to focus on ourselves. Why not make Tuesday night face mask night? Try our Byron Bay Skincare's 2 in 1 Exfoliant & Mask, the perfect treat-yourself-10-minute-facial-in-a-jar. While you wait for the mask to dry, spend the 10 minutes doing something you truely love - whether it be painting, cooking or talking on the phone to your grandma. Next, indulge in a warm shower to wash away the mask and any worries from the day. Finish off your ritual by nourishing your face with our Replenishing Cream, to naturally moisturise every layer of the skin (exactly what your skin needs during the colder months). The results? Your skin will feel revitalised, hydrated, instantly smoother, brighter and softer. Win win!