The holidays are over and now is the time of year when many people struggle with having the winter blues. So how can you prevent this from happening to you or your family?
According to Beverly Anderson, executive director for Ebenezer Child Care Centers with locations in downtown Milwaukee, on Milwaukee’s southside, and in Oak Creek and West Allis/Wauwatosa, “There are many things you can do to boost your mood and help get you and your family through this cold, dark time of year.”
Here are some tips:
Improve Your Environment
The days are naturally darker this time of year, but that doesn’t mean you should be sitting in the dark. Anderson recommends that you make sure wherever you are sitting is brightly lit during the day and the evening.
“Gray, overcast days can be hard on anyone’s moral,” says Anderson. “However, by making sure wherever you are working or lounging is brightly lit, you can help to compensate for the lost light outside and boost your moral.”
Anderson also suggests making your environment as pleasant as possible by playing upbeat music and burning a candle with a scent that makes you relax. “All of these little things can make a big difference in boosting your mood.”
Get Outside to Exercise or Exercise Indoors
It is important to exercise year round, but during this time of year it is particularly important to get moving, according to Anderson. “Exercising boosts your endorphins, which in turn boosts your mood. So try to get outside and go for a brisk walk at least three to four times a week. The fresh air will also boost your mood. On those days when it is simply too cold or icy to go outdoors, find an indoor alternative such as a shopping center just to get you moving and feeling more positive.”
It is understandable that our bodies crave comfort foods this time of year. However, comfort foods can also be high in fat and leave you feeling sluggish. Anderson suggests eating more low-fat foods such as salads and low-fat soups that leave you feeling more comfortable and alert.
Helping others is a great way to lift your spirits. Anderson recommends checking out volunteer opportunities in the community or just seeing if an elderly person in your neighborhood may need assistance with something. “It is a great way to spread kindness and feel good about yourself.”
Plan a Getaway
Planning a vacation can also be a great mood booster. Places such as Wisconsin Dells with all of their waterparks can be a great break from winter for the entire family. However, if budgets are prohibitive, you can plan a “pretend getaway” to also boost your family’s mood. Plan a picnic, download some beach music and bring some outside games such as corn hole inside to play. Your children will love it, and it will help break up the winter blues.
Ebenezer Child Care Centers is a not-for-profit, locally based agency committed to providing early childhood programs from the heart. The agency prides itself on being different from other child care providers in that it offers a home-like atmosphere; individualized, nurturing care; and a structured curriculum that is virtues-based for every child’s developmental stage.
Every Ebenezer Child Care Center focuses on all aspects of a child’s development: cognitive, physical, emotional, and social. In addition to providing quality care, the agency also offers free Parenting Talks and other educational programming all aimed at helping parents.
The agency has locations in downtown Milwaukee, on Milwaukee’s southside, and in Oak Creek and West Allis/Wauwatosa. The agency’s main office is located at 1496 South 29th Street, Milwaukee. For more information, please call 414-643-5070.