Cold weather reflecting your mood? Here are some tips on coping with seasonal sadness
I am afraid a hot drink is mandatory for reading this
For many students, winter is a time of sparkly lights, excessive hot chocolate drinking and arguing with your housemates if it is too early to turn on the heating yet. However, now the initial excitement of moving to uni has started to wear off and courses have gifted a mountain of assessments as an early Christmas present, it is not unusual for many students to develop a lack of motivation and overall sadness. Getting out of bed to face the icy breeze is a mighty battle faced by students.
Mental health may affect all aspects of your life, so accessing the right support is essential in maintaining a positive approach during times when daylight seems only to last five minutes. So here are some tips on achieving inner warmth on a nine degree day.
Wrap up warm and embrace the cold
As unpleasant as it sounds, leaving the warmth of your accommodation. Getting outside and appreciating those precious few sunlit hours can definitely alleviate your body’s loss of sunshine. Taking a walk with friends to view the Christmas decorations or even the rage of losing a game of table tennis at the weekly feel good free sports activities are a fantastic way to get your blood pumping.
Let the light in
Once the sun has decided to graciously appear, leave your curtains open during its brief visit. Bringing light back into your space every day provides a return of normalcy, so sit by your window and enjoy the scenery of Lincoln, or its never-ending traffic If you live on the ground floor! Maybe even adopt a plant to care for, a cute succulent can serve as a reminder to let the light in, unless you forget to water it!
Warm up with cosy activities
Winter can be a lonely time for many, so socializing becomes even more important. So, invite your friends over for some chaotic game nights (if you’re brave enough to risk civil war for a game of Monopoly). November is the month to get crafty.
Perhaps knit some partially wonky hats as gifts or get messy with the hundreds of fun painting challenges you can do with others. Adding a splash of colour to your life (and hair for the week it takes the paint to wash out) will make for some great memories to decrease those feelings of loneliness.
Pick up a pen and start writing
One of the most effective ways of dealing with a wave of negative emotions is to keep a journal. And I have to say there is nothing more relaxing than, getting some comfy pj’s on, making your favourite hot drink and pouring out your emotions onto a blank page.
There are many great things about taking the time to evaluate your thoughts from the day, you don’t even need to be great at writing as journaling is for your eyes only. Marking down the feelings you have in the present creates an opportunity to revisit those same thoughts and understand them in a different way in the future.
Winter can entail a difficult few months for many, although there are lots of things you can do to ease a low mood, there is plenty of support out there for you to speak to about these difficulties. For now, it may be cold and dark outside but use this to truly appreciate the light and the company of others.
If you wish to reach out about your mental health, contact Student Wellbeing on their website, or reach them by phone on 01522 837080.