How to Beat the Blues in January

 

Mary Williams, Communications Director

January

It’s January.  In Wisconsin, what is there to do in January?  Well, there is not a whole lot. As I am writing, this I feel a bit more sluggish than I did about a month ago.  I think these feelings emerge because the excitement of the holidays has passed. Plus, and there really isn’t much to look forward to unless you are a fan of the cold and the snow. (This former Arizona resident gets homesick around this time of year). Let’s face it, even PTK members can be affected by the weather!

While browsing the internet (because that is what you do in January), I came across this thing called the “the Winter Blues.”  Apparently this is a real thing, it has a real name, too: Seasonal Affective Disorder.  It’s a form of depression that is impacted by the lack of sunshine, the changes in serotonin and melatonin, and our Circadian Rhythm.  My family is here in LaCrosse with me, I can  imagine how this form of depression can affect a  student who is away from home.

Beating the Blues

I decided to find out how I (and you) can make this SAD thing go away, or lessen the effects of these Winter Blues.  According to Pharmacy Times, there are things you can do to beat the winter blues.  In fact, you can even turn some of these into chapter fellowship events! Here are some ideas-

Host a game night

Spend time with friends in a fun and interactive way. Get out the games that will get you laughing like Cards Against Humanity, or games that will get you thinking like scrabble.  Either one will help to lower your stress hormones and help you to feel better.   Better yet maybe your PTK chapter can host a fellowship activity, such a game night with your fellow chapter-mates.  Playing games is always fun and a great way to get to know one another.

Exercise

Exercising can also help to reduce your stress hormones, and you don’t have to do it outside, hit the gym, or even at the YMCA. Your PTK chapter can even get together once a week and take a jog along a river or a lake as a group, just to keep up with that resolution and to make it a group activity, to keep an eye out for one another, make sure no one catches too much of the blues

Clean up Your Diet

Sugar can make you feel good for a minute but then you feel that crash not just physically but emotionally and mentally. Try to regulate these more so you down get that sugar crash to make you feel even worse.  Think about a healthy cooking night or soup and salad pot luck with your chapter-Yum!

Music

Play some upbeat music something that is happy nothing that will make you sad, there is a study that shows that after just 12 minutes of upbeat music that the study subjects were happier. How about some happy music at your next chapter meeting? Easy and Fun!

So, maybe some of these ideas can  help  beat the Winter Blues and make January a bit more bearable.  (However, it is still really cold!)