As winter has made its frigid appearance, it has taken no mercy on the lower 48. As any sane person can attest, the winter blues and cabin fever might feel like the biggest obstacles on your radar.
With Winter Storm Juno in effect, have no fear; I have compiled seven ways you can combat the impending days of hibernation and the sorrow that will ensue in the weeks to come.
As a self-proclaimed veteran winter warrior, these tips have kept me afloat during the greyest of winter days.
Tired of scrolling through Netflix? Get your brush on at a local pottery joint and see what you can create with some friends.
Painting a common household object has never been so intriguing; get a serving platter, piggy bank or a coffee mug and paint it some insane color with a simple design. Polka dots? Done. College colors? Check. Now, you have a new coffee mug for the office.
After a couple days, it will be roasted and toasted in a kiln and voila! It's ready for daily use. This is better than your seventh grade art class.
You can use your new serving platter for your next wine and cheese party. Everyone will comment on how beautiful your art skills are, even if they are as remedial as mine.
Try A Trendy Group Fitness Class
Whether it's OrangeTheory, aerial yoga, Barry’s Bootcamp or SoulCycle (if you’re lucky enough to have one in your area), throw out the anxiety that you won’t know what you’re doing. No one does, even after the first couple of times at these specific kinds of workouts.
Surprise, it might even take a few sessions to get a hang of the rhythm, cadence and routine at these classes. Sometimes, getting out of your rut and usual routine and experiencing a new workout is amazing for your psyche. If you have the heart for fitness, this is a must!
Breaking out of the house and trying a new class breaks up the monotony of trucking along on the elliptical or logging miles on the treadmill. You might even get addicted to the new trend and make some new friends along the way.
The perk of these studios is there are constantly deals on sites like Gilt.com if you want to invest in a few sessions. Often on your first visit, your first session is free, like at OrangeTheory, or at a discounted price, like at SoulCycle.
Why not go and burn off the booze and get some endorphins flowing on a Tuesday night?
Drink Bourbon (Wine, Vodka Or The Whole Shelf)
After the first snows of winter, you might find your jaded self replying to visitors saying, “No, the snow is not beautiful.”
Maybe you’re bitter your commute was extended another half hour, or you had to drudge home in it with your groceries. Been there, done that. When you finally arrive home, you’re itching to imbibe some spirits with your roommate, or maybe even alone -- there ain’t no shame!
Sometimes, we all need to take off the edge of the day with a luxurious glass of red wine or a beer, but for some reason, when you are freezing all the time, the only thing that sounds good is a solid bourbon, whiskey or vodka.
It builds that heat from the inside out without having to go to hot yoga. As a non-medical professional, I am telling you, it's okay to enjoy a couple tumblers of your go-to beverage. Some days, you just need it, even if it is a Monday and it’s going to be a long week.
Vitamin D: Feeling Grey?
Recent research has touted that regular Vitamin D supplements will help battle against Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD).
With the shorter days and general lack of sunlight, it is a struggle to get enough Vitamin D. Vitamin D is difficult to obtain through diet, which is why medical professionals suggest Vitamin D supplements to increase your exposure.
According to the Mayo Clinic, in one study, Vitamin D was found to be more beneficial than light therapy. Although there is a debate between researchers whether Vitamin D can “cure” SAD, it is worth considering and talking to a medical professional to see if it could help you throughout the long winter months.
Plan A Vacation... Now
You might be daydreaming of the beach and your pedicured toes in the sand, but if it isn’t possible to get away now, consider planning a getaway in the spring or summer.
Getting pumped for a vacation, even if it is months away, can be encouraging to your spirit. Order a new bikini, plan excursions for your trip and research the sights in anticipation of your big vacay.
Be the person who posts that obnoxious question on Facebook: “Fun things to do in San Fran, go!” If you get a head start, it will make the vacation more special and meaningful, and it will be something you look forward to planning and dreaming of.
Don’t Close Yourself Off; Go See Your Friends
It can be easy to order takeout on a Friday or Saturday night, instead of battling the elements outside. However, this habit can easily become your weekend routine.
In the beginning of the week, send out an email to your friends for a girls' night out, or take the reins and plan a themed party -- even if it is silly.
What about a legit pizza party where guests bring any type of pizza delicacy, whether it's Bagel Bites, a homemade version, or a deep dish from your favorite restaurant?
Your friends will have a blast participating in something campy that is different from the norm. Have a panel of judges to evaluate the best submissions.
Go On That Tinder Date
It can be addictive to swipe away in your winter boredom. However, consider your matches. Does anyone spark your interest?
Be the first one to send the message and compliment someone in a genuine way. What’s the worst that could happen by sending the first correspondence?
It’s easy to get in the rhythm of messaging back and forth and nothing coming to fruition, but in the spirit of taking life by the horns, suggest meeting for a drink. If someone asks you out, go for it.
If all else fails, you can talk about your favorite movies and reveal your worst Tinder dates. On the positive side, maybe you meet a new partner-in-crime!