Winter can be a difficult time for many of us, but these self-care tips can assist your mind, body, and spirit in getting back on track when they might feel a little wobbly.
Self-care is a way to restore your mind, body, and spirit. Many of us experience particularly low moods, low energy, and worse health during the winter months due to decreased sunlight exposure, harsher weather, and limited time outdoors. To help alleviate these issues, this article offers season-specific self-care ideas to help you get through winter with ease.
1. Take Morning Walks
It may sound like a pain to begin your day with a walk, especially in the winter when the weather can be harsh and dreary. However, even just a little time outdoors combined with physical activity can boost mental and physical health.
Aside from giving you a dose of vitamin D, this practice helps expose you to the morning sun before 11am, which can help regulate circadian rhythm. The result is more daytime energy and an increased ability to sleep easily at night and wake up in the morning.
2. Eat More Plant-Based Foods
Your body will be especially grateful for a healthy, plant-based diet in the winter, when many of us feel tired more often due to limited sunlight exposure.
Some of our favorite healthy, plant-based recipes include:
- Vegan buddha bowl
- Crunchy jicama salad
- Vegan poke bowl
- Veggie sushi rolls
- Homemade vegan black bean burger
- Vegan chickpea salad
3. Try DIY Body Care
There are countless simple recipes for making your own beauty products that will make you feel good inside and out. Anything from body scrubs and face masks to bath bombs and foot scrubs can be made using natural ingredients and common household items like honey, oats, and coconut oil.
Get started with DIY body care recipes like:
- Natural body wash for beginners
- 2-ingredient sugar scrub
- Body butter with geranium & primrose
- Homemade bubble bath
- Foot peels for softer skin
4. Practice Mindfulness
Mindfulness practices are flexible and wide-ranging, and particularly important in winter. Engaging in mindfulness activities, such as meditation or deep breathing, can help you to stay present and reduce stress. These skills are extra important in the winter when we often have fewer opportunities to enjoy the outdoors or unplug from our screens.
Mindfulness can include activities like:
5. Get Outside
Even if it’s cold, taking a walk or spending some time outdoors can help to boost your mood and improve your overall wellbeing. Bonus points if you’re able to go on a winter hike, snowshoe excursion, or participate in any other winter sport activity that allows you to have some fun and be in nature.
6. Host a Dinner Party
Hosting a dinner party may not seem like an obvious example of a self-care practice. However, communing with loved ones can help improve your mood and create a sense of support and belonging all while strengthening connections. The New York Times explained how the strength of personal relationships is one of the most important factors in perceived happiness.
If a dinner party isn’t your thing, you can plan any kind of get-together with friends, colleagues, and other people in your circle to help you feel elevated during winter.
7. Practice Gratitude
Similarly to practicing mindfulness, starting a gratitude practice can help shift your perspective and improve your overall mood. Expressing gratitude leads to more positive feelings and a more optimistic outlook.
8. Listen to Upbeat Music
Listen to upbeat mood-boosting music — you pick your favorite genre. Think reggaeton, disco, bossa nova, samba, cumbia, funk, or pop if that’s your jam. Avoid sleepy or sad songs that can encourage low moods.
9. Make Soups
Soups can be made with inexpensive ingredients, and are comforting and versatile. They are also generally nutritious and can help you get vitamins in during the dreary winter months.
10. Wear Something Warm
Bundle up in your favorite cozy sweater and thick socks or go thrifting for some great second-hand sweaters. Feeling wrapped up, warm and cozy will help your body relax, which can also help your relax mentally.
11. DIY Candles for a Cozy Winter Atmosphere
Create a brighter, more welcoming, and beautiful environment with your own homemade candles.
Try out some of these DIY candle projects:
- How to make scented candles at home
- How to make soy candles at home: step by step guide
- How to reuse candle jars: 7 fun ideas
12. Curl Up With a Book
Whatever time of year and however you’re feeling, settling in with a good book for an hour or two can be the best self-care.
- Self Care for Moms: Why It’s Important & 11 Ideas
- 8 Tips for Staying Warm and Safe When Hiking in Winter
- Self-Improvement: Why We All Need a Break From It
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