Winter is a season that most people tough out, but there are joys to be had beyond the holidays.
Let the coldest time of year remind you of light and warmth, with acts of self-improvement and love, all within the cozy walls of your home. Your house is your hearth after all, and a few tips will see you through the season:
1. Batch Cook Comfort Food
There’s nothing like a good home-cooked meal, and while you’re at it, why not make extra? Stash away freezer meals to pop in the oven later for nutritious comfort food on the chilliest of days.
Take a whole day to tend to stew, soup, chili or lasagna. If you prefer to stay in bed, put together some tasty freezer meals in your slow cooker. Once it’s done, just store it away.
2. Update Your Journal
At some point, you’ve started a journal, and it’s been several weeks, months or years since you’ve added to it. Write a new entry, even if it’s from the perspective of your cat observing your day. Make it strange! Make it interesting! Write about how you feel.
3. Write a Novel
You may have always wanted to try your hand at novel writing. First drafts are meant to be crappy. It’s a rite of passage to the glorious revision. Write, now!
Keep a pad and pen with you. Write a few sentences between chores or during a conversation with the friend who takes 10 years to describe a 10-minute moment. It all adds up.
4. Build a Capsule Wardrobe
Are you guilty of a badly put together grab-and-go look? Fling open your closet door, pull the clothes out of your drawers and mix and match. Build your own capsule wardrobe, with a few versatile pieces you love, that you can rearrange into many different outfits. It’s a mix of functional and stylish pants, shirts, blouses, skirts, dresses, and outerwear.
The payoffs are big. You don’t waste time raiding your closet. You realize what a waste of time binge shopping is, and save money because you’re finally satisfied with your wardrobe. Only update it as needed.
5. Regulate Your Sleep Cycle
Hibernation may be for the bears, but you want to stay in bed, too. It’s understandable to not be as motivated as you would during the summer. Think of winter as the perfect time to finally regulate your sleeping schedule.
A lack of quality sleep affects your concentration, mood, and overall health. Create a ritual to wind down before bed and relax. Stick to set times during the week and on the weekends to go to bed and to wake up. When you regulate your sleep schedule, you’ll also notice improvements in your health and mood.
6. Develop an Indoor Exercise Routine
Whether you practice yoga or Zumba in your home, developing an indoor exercise routine will keep you motivated in the winter months. Exercise will get your blood flowing and keep you warm, producing helpful hormones to keep you alert and stress-free. When you don’t want to go to the gym, a 30-minute workout indoors is just as good.
7. Learn a New Language
Brush up on another language you learned in school but are out of practice with. There are many beautiful languages with unique idioms and phrases that express complex emotions with one simple word. Expand your horizons and rewire the way you speak, think and relate to learning a new language.
8. Pamper Your Skin
Once a week, have a spa day and take care of your skin. After all, it’s your body’s largest organ. Your skin protects you from disease and helps keep you warm in the winter. Give it love with homemade skin care recipes, from natural face masks to creamy body lotions.
9. Organize the Messiest Space
Whether it’s your desk, closet or a storage room, organize the messiest space in your home. The rest of your house and life won’t look so challenging, once the biggest mess is out of the way.
10. Do One Random, Silly Thing Every Day
Playtime is good for adults, and you know you work too hard. Turn off your cell phone and take off the serious mask.
Release your inner child for unstructured playtime. Have a dance party. Build a blanket fort. Skip on your way to the bathroom. Sing in the shower. When you let yourself play, you’ll boost your mood, be more productive and laugh.
Avoid the seasonal blues and have a good winter by staying engaged with life. Keep warm and cozy indoors as you cook comfort food, write the great American novel or learn a new language. Winter may mean longer nights, but that doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy them.
Featured photo credit: Giulia Bertelli via unsplash.com