Winter is here!

This time of year presents many challenges – the darkening nights and increase in coughs and colds.

It can be hard approaching Christmas for some people, and the worries over Coronavirus this year haven’t helped people’s wellbeing.

See my top tips to help with managing your mental health over winter.

Limit News

The news is depressing and so are the people who talk about it all the time!

Cut down the amount of time you spend on social media and checking out the news.

 

Plan your week

It’s easy to lose track of your schedule, take time at the start of the week to plan your objectives:

  • What do you need to do at work?
  • At home?
  • With your personal goals?

When planning for the week make sure to…

 

Take time for you

Plan your week ahead and set out time where you can do activities you enjoy and can unwind with.

It is important to have time to yourself to rebuild.  Focusing too much on your commitments could cause you to burnout.

Check out my post How Splitting Tasks into Quadrants Helps to Manage your Time a theory from Stephen Colbert, gives a good approach to manage and prioritise your work/life/personal commitments.

 

Lighting

It’s darker this time of year.  If possible take time out during daily light hours to have a walk.

On dark mornings look to wakeup with gradually increasing light.

 

Keep connected

2020 has been a more difficult time to see friends and family, darker days can add to this complexity.

Keep connected with your loved ones utilising technology.  I like using video conferencing and sending pictures/videos of my children to relatives using WhatsApp so they don’t miss out.

 

Coping strategies

Identify coping strategies to help you deal with stress, worry and anxiety.

To manage my emotions I use the breath, recalibrate, deliver method.  I discuss this in my post 3 Tips to Develop your Resilience to Pressure

Also when I get stressed out by problems I ask myself the simple question “Will it matter in a year?”

This puts my problems into perspective.  Check out this approach in my post 4 tricks to take control of your emotions

 

Positive affirmations

 

Written down a list of 5 – 10 positive affirmations about yourself.

This can be what you are good at, what you will achieve.

If you struggle to complete this exercise, look at areas where you have ‘failed’ and reframe that thought.

For example:

Recently I tried some home DIY, but ended struggling to complete the job.  On the positive I pushed myself and learnt more about my strengths and weaknesses.

I discuss the benefits of affirmations and how to do them in my post: Do affirmations work?

 

Help others

 

All year around we should take time to try and help others – this can be something simple like giving a compliment, feedback or helping someone with a task.

This time of year you might also want to help those struggling by donating items to a food bank or buying/donating old toys for children.

Helping others is rewarding and can help create positive emotions.

 

Re-establish your values

Reconnect with what matters to you?

Like being creative? Find more opportunity to do so.

This article from my newsletter gives you an exercise for you to help understand what are the values that matter to you.

Check it out: Who are you?

 

Keep active

Image from Pexels

With the weather turning colder you might not be as eager to get outside.

Do home workouts, lift weights or wrap up and take a walk.

Regular exercise has many benefits to stress and can help boost your mood.

If you have any fitness, exercise, gym related questions then please do add a comment below.

 

Ask for help

If you find yourself struggling – reach out to friends, family, your doctor or various support lines.

It’s important to talk to someone about how you feel.

 

Close…

I hope some of this advice is of help.

Look after yourself and stay safe.

James @perfectmanifesto.com

<<if you enjoyed this post, check out 6 Ways to Level Up Your Wellbeing>>

 


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3 thoughts on “Managing Mental Health Over Winter

    1. Thanks! It’s a really useful approach as I used to tell myself that I was stupid, useless etc when I failed a task. By using this method I became more aware I was thinking like this, stopped my thoughts and focused on reframing how I was thinking about the experience to be more positive.

      Liked by 2 people

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