Got a case of the winter blues? I don’t blame you. The cold weather and snow are only good for a handful of things (like making trees look prettier) but for the most part we can’t wait to say good riddance to winter and its shorter days, colder temperatures, and longer, slushy commutes. In case February being a short month wasn’t quite enough of a mood booster for you, we’ve put together some suggestions that may help you beat the winter blues at the office.
Get up and move around. Everybody knows that exercise releases endorphins, so take a break from your desk to bring some movement into your day. I’m not necessarily suggesting cubicle yoga (although this energizing Moksha Backbend may be just what your body needs!), but a walk down the street to the grocery store or coffee shop will give you a much needed mental break and energy boost.
While you’re up, fill up your water bottle. The importance of drinking plenty of water is an often-preached piece of advice for a reason—it does wonders for your body! But for some people, it can be difficult to make a habit of it. One way to push yourself at the beginning is to invest in a good quality 750ml BPA-free (no leeching chemicals) reusable water bottle that you can keep at your desk (no forgot-it-at-home excuses), like this one from Well.ca. Fill it up each morning and challenge yourself to finish it by the time you get up for lunch. Then fill it up again after lunch and challenge yourself to finish it by the time you leave for the day. There you go! In no time, you’ll be in the habit of downing a healthy amount of H2O every day.
Kill two birds with one stone. When you eat better, you typically see a noticeable difference in how you feel both mentally and physically. Try swapping the weekly burrito team lunch (yeah, I went there!) for a salad bar every once in a while. I’ve heard of a few companies doing this and it sounds like an interesting way to eat healthier without sacrificing that morale-boosting lunch time. Just put somebody in charge with bringing the lettuce, and have everybody else bring in one or two salad “toppers” like goat cheese, pomegranate seeds, or diced veggies. Got a competitive team? Maybe hold the “Best Salad” awards after.
Open the blinds. If your desk is near a window, make sure to get your daily dose of Vitamin D by letting plenty of natural light in. If you aren’t close to a window, try to book meetings in conference rooms with lots of windows and add an extra lamp to your desk.
Be mindful of your contagious mood. Like yawning and craving sushi, the winter blues can be easily spread. People are naturally wired to try to relate to one another, so try to start off on the right foot tomorrow morning by keeping conversations positive and upbeat or carrying out a random act of kindness like taking care of a coffee run for the team.
Take a vacation just because. It doesn’t have to be the week-long beach getaway type of vacation (but if it can be, go for it!). Why not recreate that thrill of a long weekend coming up by using a vacation day or two to turn next weekend into a long weekend?
Do you have another idea you’ve used to beat the winter blues? Share it with us!