Blue Monday: 10 small ways to stay positive through the gloominess of January 4 months ago

Blue Monday: 10 small ways to stay positive through the gloominess of January

Because January can be a long old month.

After the longest two years in the history of mankind, it is starting to feel like we are finally on the home stretch with this whole pandemic debacle – and thank God for that.

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However, it is still winter. And it is still January … and as we all know, this can make spring – and happier, brighter days – still feel like they are a long way off.

However– I am a firm believer in that by adding small positive actions or habits into my days, it really can change my entire mood or day around. And just like that, by putting one foot in front of the other, finding little things to be joyful for or that brings you joy, winter will pass into spring.

In the meantime, let's make this month worthwhile. By filling our days with small, happy, positive habits, we are doing our best. And better days will come – you know they will.

And until then:

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1. Prioritise sleep

Sleep matters a huge amount to our overall health and wellbeing, and even our mood. So this month, make it a priority to get enough of it.

Create a soothing evening routine, and stick to it. Soak in the bath, turn off your phone, read a book, practise some self-care – and go to bed early. You will feel a hundred times better for it.

2. Cry when you need to

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Seriously – sometimes a good cry really does make everything better.

3. Find a way to give back

Go through your wardrobe and donate clothes you no longer want or need. Host a fundraiser for a charity close to your heart. Donate to a local food run. There are so many ways to give back to your community, just find one that works for you.

4. Organise your paperwork

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File away important things, toss old receipts, but stuff you need to keep into folders. You will love the feeling of not having random pieces of paper floating around the house.

5. Buy yourself flowers

Once a week, maybe on a Monday and or Friday, pick yourself up a bunch of flowers. Having fresh flowers at home is such a happiness booster.

6. Edit your wardrobe

Take everything out, donate what you haven't worn in the last year, throw out what's broken and hand everything you want to keep nicely back in, putting items that are the same together, so you can easily put together an outfit in the morning.

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7. Sign up for a 30-day yoga program

Sometimes the hardest thing about deciding to start anything is figuring out where to start – and this is especially true with anything that has to do with exercise. Luckily, the internet – and social media – is filled with different step-by-step fitness or yoga challenges or programs. Just pick one you like the sound of and get stuck in.

8. Paint a wall in your house

Some added colour will make a space feel fresh – and will no doubt end up perking you up too.

Remember to ask your landlord if you are renting!

9. Set up a bookclub

Get in touch with some friends and make it happen –it really is that simple. Agree on which book to start off with, set a date for when you have to have the book finished – and make sure you are stocked up on vino and some snacks!

10. Get some fresh air (and sunshine if you can) every morning

On a biological level, we are not all that different from plants – we all need sunlight and air to live. And the best thing you can do for your mood and for your health, is to start your day off by getting it. Trust me – even just 10 minutes every morning will make a huge difference to our day.

Open your window first thing when you wake up and take a deep inhale of fresh air. Alternatively, go all the way outside and go for a walk or run, if that is what you are used to or craving. The important thing is that you are providing your body with a lot of fresh oxygen.