The winter blues are like a horrible Harry Potter villain. You use up all your strength trying to avoid them, and just when you think you’re in the clear they pounce, locking you into a state of perpetual misery. They finally caught up with me last week, and in an attempt to shake them off once and for all I’ve put together a simple 10-point plan. So if you’re also suffering from a gloomy state of mind here are a few things you can try…
1. Reread your favourite novels
I always reread my favourite books when I’m feeling low. Sometimes I go cover-to-cover again, and other times I’ll just dip into certain chapters. Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird and Tina Fey’s Bossypants are my two go-tos.
2. Make a feel-good playlist
Jump onto Spotify or iTunes and create the ultimate feel-good playlist. I suggest Happy by Pharrell Williams, Shake it Off by Taylor Swift, Stronger by Britney Spears, Roar by Katy Perry, Unwritten by Natasha Bedingfield, Uptown Funk by Mark Ronson, Bang Bang by Jessie J and Bootylicious by Destiny’s Child.
3. Treat yourself
Sometimes retail therapy really is the best medicine! And you don’t need to spend major $$$s, because little treats have the same mood-enhancing powers as luxury items. Put aside £15 for a new lipstick, an H&M top, a bestselling novel, delicious-smelling bubble bath or a glossy magazine and you’ll instantly get a hit of positive endorphins.
4. Have dates in the diary to look forward to
Last week I booked tickets to see Taylor Swift on her 1989 tour, which naturally I’m super excited about. Bring on June 27th! Here are some more UK-based ideas to book now: #Grazia10 talks; Savage Beauty at the V&A; Kylie, Grace Jones, Chic and Nile Rodgers live at Hyde Park; GROW London, the contemporary garden fair; Edinburgh Festival Fringe and The London Coffee Festival.
5. Step into nature
I’m not an outdoorsy person at the best of times, so during the winter it takes a lot to get me to leave the house. However, even I have to admit it’s worth the effort because a quick walk can totally clear your mind and set you on a more positive path. So get those UGG boots on and step outside!
6. Dial a manicure
If you’re in London the LeSalon mobile app needs to be on your radar! It’s basically Uber for manicures! Simply select whether you want a mani or pedi, chose when and where and the app will match you to available nail technicians in your area who will come to your home or office. They also offer discounts for group bookings, so it’s a great way to spend an afternoon at home with your BFFs.
7. Plan a ’90s movie night
Gather your best friends and have a screening of one (or more) of the following: 10 Things I Hate About You, Clueless, She’s All That, Cruel Intentions, Never Been Kissed, Bring It On and Drop Dead Gorgeous. It was a prime decade in Hollywood history, that’s for sure!
8. Set yourself a challenge
Try wearing lipstick every day for a month. Purchase a Jawbone fitness tracker and see whether you can top 10,000 steps a day. Attempt to cook two new recipes every week. Sign up for that charity race you always say you’ll do “next year”. Learn how to code. Whatever it is – big or small – give yourself a goal and a distraction from the cold.
9. Send an e-card
Reach out to good friends you’ve lost touch with. Everyone loves to receive a Paperless Post e-card (especially if it’s from the Oscar de la Renta or J.Crew collections), so why not whiz a free “Hello Dahling” card over to your uni buddies? And Tory Burch’s “Big Kiss” GIF is also sure to brighten up any inbox too.
10. Eat cake
And if all of the above fail to cheer you up the you know what you have to do… eat a giant slice of cake! It always works!
What are your tricks for keeping the winter blues away? Leave a comment and let me know…
First photo by Kylie Martin