20 Ways to Beat the Winter Blahs

by Holly on February 10, 2012

in happiness,healthy tips,randomness,winter

I don’t know about you but without fail come February, also comes a funk.

Something about it being the shortest month of the year and its peculiar placement smooshed between the passage of winter and spring really lends February to feelings of moodiness, sickness and just overall meh-ness. And I know I am not the only one! In talking to friends, family and co-workers, it seems as though the month of February has us all in its firm funk-filled grip.

But today…today we fight back!

(1) Embrace the winter weather. Walk. Snowshoe. Hike. Ski. Snowboard. Run.

If you have a dog, this one should be much easier to accomplish.

(2) And if you are one of those crazy winter runners, buy yourself something nice. Like a new running jacket! I just bought this Under Armour Women’s Impulse jacket for my long marathon training runs, and it’s made getting out the door so much easier.

(3) Two words: Laser. Tag.

(4) Try Chobani’s newest flavors of Greek yogurt: apple cinnamon, blood orange & passionfruit!

Yes, I was sent these samples for free…but no, I am not being paid for this shoutout. And to prove this point, after I tasted the Blood Orange flavor, I went right to Target and bought 10 of them.

(5) It’s called retail therapy for a reason. Go shopping. Buy yourself something pretty.

(6) In reference to #5 (see above), may I suggest some fancy heels and if your wallet is so inclined, a fancy, frilly dress? Then go home and take a nice long, hot shower. Put on your new duds, a bit of make-up and go to the swankiest bar in town you can think of. Guys, don’t think you can’t do this too. Swap out the heels + dress for a nice suit, and maybe skip the make-up?

Order yourself a drink. Something you wouldn’t normally order like a vodka gimlet with lime…or a whiskey manhattan. Or stick with a Sex and the City-inspired cosmopolitan to feel très chic.

Talking in a British accent and flirting with the bartender, optional.

(7) Make soup. It’s warm…it’s comforting…it’s liquid for the soul.

(8) Watch this video and try not to smile or laugh. I dare you. It’s impossible.

(9) Or this video. Seriously, YouTube is such a mood booster.

(10) Listen to Of Monsters and Men. It’s happy-inducing music. My sister recommended this band to me about a week ago, and I’M OBSESSED. In fact, I am listening to “Little Talks” right now.

(11) Plan a trip! Nothing turns around my mood like traveling. I’m working on booking trips to Colorado, Los Angeles, Kansas and just maybe…Argentina this year? Pure excitement.

(12) Invite your favorite people and friends to dinner! Somehow, the combination of conversation, good food, beverages and time together makes me happier than just about anything. Bonus for me: my friends are really funny so a whole lot of laughing is had.

P.S. Beer and fried cheese curds make for a great way to dine.

(13) One word: bowling.

(14) Make a thank you journal. Gratitude is a powerful thing.

(15) Take a class! Photography…cooking…ballroom dancing…creative writing…financial planning…just do it! Winter is the perfect time to hunker down and learn something new.

Or just try something you’ve always wanted to do! I roasted a chicken. It was awesome.

(16) Live music makes me happy…perhaps it would make you happy too? Buy tickets to a concert of a band you absolutely love (no matter the price) and get crazy. Dance crazy.

(17) Clean your house. When my surroundings are organized, so am I. I feel mentally clearer and just better overall. So clean out the closet. Scrub the floors. Organize drawers. Sanitize. Light yummy apple cinnamon candles. And enjoy your newly-clean abode.

(18) DO NOT SKIP WORKOUTS. Endorphins are needed at this time of year more than ever.

(19) Pamper yourself. Get your nails did…or your hair did. Read trashy magazines. Zone out. Try to interpret what your nail ladies are saying. Chat with your stylist. Sip tea. Zone Out.

Again gentlemen…this goes for you too.

(20) Take a deep breath. Do it right now and smile, for March is not so far away.

What is one thing YOU’RE doing to beat the winter blahs? Sharing is caring!

{ 29 comments }

Christie February 10, 2012 at 12:30 pm

It’s summer here in NZ at the moment, but I will bookmark this page to come back to in a few months! My tip to beat the winter blahs: get out of the house and see your friends. Seriously, it will keep you sane. And make you appreciate your warm & cosy bed a whole lot more when you get home!

Megan (Braise the Roof) February 10, 2012 at 12:48 pm

I’m pretty sure Kristen Bell’s stock went up at LEAST 73% because of that clip. It’s hilarious! Fried cheese curds. I need those back in my life…maybe I’ll make a trip to the Cheese Castle and do some experimenting. Pretty sure that could break a mighty powerful funk.

Lindsay @ Lindsay's List February 10, 2012 at 12:51 pm

BLEND plug – start planning vacations to Colorado!! Maybe in May! Like May 4th-6th! Do that!

Erica D February 10, 2012 at 12:57 pm

Thanks for the birthday wishes! On that note….still recovering, haha! My friends wouldn’t let me go without a rager, and its theme was birthday cake-flavored vodka. Yum, but ouch. Rugby pre-season is keeping me busy, and I’m taking a modern dance class that’s challenging me as I’ve never been before. Plus it’s Colorado…so it’s sunny most of the time :) Easy to beat the February blues!

Amy B @ Second City Randomness February 10, 2012 at 1:13 pm

I’ve consumed more soup this year than I ever have before to help me get through. And this has been a MILD winter. I’m just so excited for Spring. I can’t help it!

Lauren February 10, 2012 at 1:54 pm

I just discovered how relaxing it can be to spend some time by yourself. Lately, I’ve really been into going out to lunch by myself or grabbing coffee and catching up on work. Me dates are so underrated. :)

Kamee February 10, 2012 at 2:16 pm

You inspired me to make a list for you. So a few things:
1. Aren’t sister’s great?! Just like your’s turned you on to Of Monsters and Men, mine turned me on to your blog.
2. I love Monsters and Men. Little Talks has been on repeat at work lately.
3. I love your blog!
4. I was recently broken up with (right before we were leaving for our Christmas vacation, lame) and that is why my sister sent me to your blog. It makes me smile and helps me get out of my PBUB (post break-up blues) and get off my duff and do something.
5. Thank you.

TGIF!
Kamee

Erica February 10, 2012 at 2:40 pm

New chobanis are soooo good! Exercise , hot coffee, and good times with friends and family does it for me

Marcy February 10, 2012 at 2:44 pm

Trip booked. Concert ticketsx2 purchased. Workouts. Check. Fried cheesecurds. Yes please!

Laura @ Sprint 2 the Table February 10, 2012 at 2:49 pm

Hooray for Colorado!!! I was thinking about Argentine this year too! I like their wine. :)

Did you slice open some of the yogurts opening the box? ‘Cause I did that too. Oops. In a moment of brilliance, I bandaged what I couldn’t eat with camouflage duct tape.

emily (a nutritionist eats) February 10, 2012 at 3:54 pm

My parents always told me to embrace winter.
So I moved to LA. :) Now I love it!

Sarah February 10, 2012 at 5:54 pm

Chocolate and retail therapy are always what work for me. So excited that there is a new Chobani 2%. Can’t wait to try it and hopefully it’s not as disappointing as the apple cinnamon. I had to choke that one in big gulps.

Hillary February 10, 2012 at 6:53 pm

My best tip: count down the days until my vacation.

Fifty, in case you were wondering.

Matt @ The Athlete's Plate February 10, 2012 at 6:56 pm

Winter sucks. I count down the days until spring ;)

Steve February 10, 2012 at 9:18 pm

In my haste to race through this entry and complete all 20 tasks, I missed the part in #6 about guys swapping the heels and frilly dress for a nice suit. Hit the nearest pub, and with my best English accent ordered a Sex On The Beach from the sirisly cuuuute bartender (even threw him a wink, just for good measure).

3 broken nails, a collapsed heel, and 2 taser-blasts later, I’m crafting this from the local hooscow. Argh. Maybe I should read more slowly next time…

:-)

Kidding, of course, but loved the post. Hope you get to feeling better, and that you’ll be able to find a new French press before too long. Have a good weekend! Oh, and you might enjoy this video on YouTube, too: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sP4NMoJcFd4

emily February 10, 2012 at 10:39 pm

I mean, stop it, you set me up for that one. I’m reading your blog on a Friday night, sans a bit of wine, instead of going out in the FREEZING cold. and feeling so very happy. I mean, sophia grace helped. ps. KANSAS…hello, i was raised there. when?

emily February 10, 2012 at 10:40 pm

sans a bit of wine? #suchaweirdo I meant the bottle is sans a bit of wine, i’ve had plenty of it. haha. redic. don’t worry, unstoppable china anica wu helped me out.

Rachel February 11, 2012 at 12:01 am

This post was so needed! I was just talking about being in a funk to my best friend and she was feeling the same. So we’re putting off studying tomorrow and going rock climbing!

Sarah@The Flying ONION February 11, 2012 at 7:09 am

At least 30 minutes of outdoor time is essential for my sanity during the winter months. I don’t care if it’s 10 below. I go out for at least this amount of time and I feel great afterwards (i.e., no more cabin fever!)

Besides, that’s what down jackets are for. :D

Great post, Holly!! :D

Anna February 11, 2012 at 9:29 am

I treated myself to a manicure last night…hot pink nails cheer me right up :)

Diana @ frontyardfoodie February 11, 2012 at 11:30 am

If only March actually meant ‘spring’. It’s still freaking cold around here in march. I have to have 80plus degrees to be comfortable. Lame.

However, fresh juice, green smoothies, vitamin D pills and a positive outlook help me get through the winter doldrums.

Mackenzie February 11, 2012 at 11:41 am

holly, just gotta say, you mah girl crush. i cracked up all over this. and YES to trip planning! PLEASE SAY YOU ARE GOING IN MARCH BECAUSE I AM. and missy, where is boston on that list? i can’t eat my way through this city by myself….

Lauren @ The Climbing Chef February 12, 2012 at 11:52 am

This really might be my favorite post of yours! I watched both videos and cried from laughing SO hard. I’m in Cali, we haven’t had winter this year…. I’m talking Northern Cali… that’s like unheard of! To be honest, I really like winter :) Rain, dark, cold, etc. I love it all… I guess that is a good thing since I went to college at San Francisco State :)

Jessica February 12, 2012 at 8:12 pm

It’s when I read posts like this that I wish even more that I still lived in Madison! I’ve been in a funk lately, I just wish I had a running/drinking/yoga/shopping buddy! Hope you are beating those winter blahs!!

Alexandra February 12, 2012 at 9:22 pm

GREAT post, looooved the video of Sophia Grace and Rosie Rap (just made my night!). I’m beating the winter blahs by working out and treating myself to the occassional (or frequent…) latte or chocolate dessert. Oh and chocolate pudding + peanut butter is a must. Seriously.

Sara February 14, 2012 at 1:12 pm

I’m all about not missing the workouts in the winter. It is soooo easy to want to skip them but during Blahuary I need them! And seriously, if you need a bag carrier on any of your trips give me a shout! ;) Love to travel but need to find some travel buddies.

Amy February 15, 2012 at 1:54 pm

Thanks for this post Holly, it really made my day! I have been hooked on watching Ellen show clips ever since.

erica banks krug February 17, 2012 at 12:31 pm

Hot yoga, drinking whiskey while watching ‘Beautiful Girls’ and the vegetarian ramen at Umami. Instant cures for the winter blahs.

Madeline - Greens and Jeans February 20, 2012 at 2:53 pm

Yay trips and YAY trip to Kansas! So glad that so many of my adventures have included you in the past couple of years!

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