The Anti-Winter Blues List

5:05 PM

I realize writing about winter in early September seems crazy, but trust me come February you will thank me. Growing up in Chicago I love seasons and I am pretty used to extreme cold and midday temperature fluctuations from cold to so cold the steam from your breath is freezing on your scarf and the snot in your nose has frozen a nostril shut. But after facing a winter like last year I had to develop a plan to combat the inevitable post-holiday winter blues.

For me the blues usually come in mid-January and stay until the first day that actually hits 40F. It is that general feeling of never wanting to leave the house combined with extreme boredom from not actually leaving the house. My peak might have come after 5 days of being home straight due to snow and extreme cold (Boston I think you probably feel me on this one).

So my solution...make a to do list now while it is warm and you are happy. The list should include all of the things you want to do in the winter in order to avoid those winter dull drums. 
Q: "But why make it now when it is so nice out?" 
A: Because this is the perfect time. You are able to actually think of fun things to do because you have left your house, had fun, and enjoyed the outdoors. In January I can barely decide what to make for dinner. I get into that funk where you know you want to do something, but you don't know what that something is, and you are so tired from fighting the freezing weather to and from work that you can't think of anything. Now when you feel that way you have the list.

I made mine in a Google doc and I shared it with my husband. Whenever we have ideas we toss them in there. We also keep one for movies or TV shows we want to binge watch during those dark winter nights. Could be fun to keep a version with friends too. Having someone to hold you accountable to leaving your house or getting off the sofa for a bit is even better!

To get you started here are some of mine (I am aiming for a mix of things that force me out of the house and keep me occupied in the house):

  • Go to a movie in the theatre once a month
  • Go to the art museum once a month or another cultural attraction in your city (garden conservatories, musical performances, lectures - local colleges can be a good resources here, plays, the zoo)
  • Spend a day and be a tourist in your own city. Check out the tourism sites for where you live. 
  • Find an indoor farmers market
  • Plan a tech free night where you play board games
  • Take a class in something you wouldn't normally - I would love to do ballet or Irish step dance
  • Watch old movies - on my docket are Adam's Rib, High Society, and Philadelphia Story. I also don't mind a good John Wayne either (Quiet Man or McKlintock)
  • Save up a few TV series for super cold snowy day binge watching
  • Write letters to your friends and send them snail mail
  • Try one new recipe a week
  • Make and freeze off a week worth of meals for those nights when you don't feel like cooking
  • Plan a trip even if it won't happen until Spring, you can get it all booked during those cold months
What are some of your winter ideas to get you through the January, February, and March slump. 

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  1. great ideas! the winter blues suck!!
    XO Ellen from Ask Away