Now the fuzzy feeling of the festive period has worn off, it may be tempting to dive into bed and bury yourself under the duvet for the next 11 months. But before you set up camp in your new bedroom fort, we must all step into the light (more on that later) and resist the dark side! No, HND Insider hasn’t converted to Jediisim; today we’ll be speaking about how to fight the January blues.
January is not a particularly welcoming month for some; it can signal the end of celebrations and time spent with family, and that can only mean one thing: back to work (and the scary sight of our bank balances). It is, therefore, easy to feel a little blue at the start of a new year. For many, it’s difficult to shake off this woeful feeling, but we’ve got a few recommendations which should help lift even the heaviest of spirits:
Better Your Career
Many of us dread our first day back to work or class after a holiday – all of a sudden it seems there’s nothing more to look forward to. This is natural if you’re in full-time work as it’s rare to find a job that’s on par with a holiday. However, if you weren’t enjoying your role or subject of study before the break (and possibly for quite some time), it may be that you’re in the wrong field. The good news is that it’s never too late for a career change. If you feel like an adjustment is needed, now’s the time to make your move.
In light of New Year’s resolutions, it can be beneficial to set yourself a challenge for 2018. Giving yourself a goal to focus on can keep you busy during your spare time. Join that yoga group; sign yourself up for that cooking class; take on some volunteering – moping is now banned! The sense of and achievement itself can do wonders for your body, mind and spirit.
Step into the Light
According to registered nutritional therapist Lola Ross, less daylight can “contribute to making us feel low in January,” as our ability to syntheses vitamin D – a vitamin associated with healthy brain function – is lessened. In addition, health information site Healthline states that in the darkness our bodies produce more melatonin which can cause “sluggishness and decreased energy.” Although it’s tempting to stay inside and keep cosy during the cold winter months, we recommend putting on those gloves and getting out into the open; giving yourself more exposure to natural light could elevate your mood.
The National Health Service (NHS) reports that being physically active “can help you lead a healthier and happier life.” Research shows physical activity can boost your self-esteem and mood, as well as reduce your risk of stress, depression and Alzheimer’s disease. Exercise releases endorphins, powerful chemicals in your brain that energise your spirits and make you feel good. Try not to see physical activity as something we ‘have to do’ or ‘ought to do’ to look after our health but as something we do because we personally value its positive benefits to our wellbeing. Remember, a gym membership isn’t needed to keep fit – those footpaths are made for walking on people!
Random Acts of Kindness
It may seem easier to keep your troubles to yourself, but people forget that their own experiences can be used to help others and form new bonds. Kind acts can give you a physiological boost as they trigger the release of the feel-good neurotransmitter dopamine. What do they say? A problem shared is a problem halved.
Okay, so our bank accounts may be a little light right now, but if we plan well (and stick to it), by summer we may have enough to spend on a holiday. Research shows that going on holiday is key to creating happiness and just the act of planning and thinking about a getaway is proven to improve your current outlook. Why not plan your next adventure and give yourself something to look forward to?
Often, the January blues fade away on their own as we settle back into normality, but why wait until then? One of the above suggestions could be just the thing to put a smile back on your face this January.
If you’re considering a study or career change, do feel free to contact HND Insider today. We could have the perfect course to get your career back on the straight and narrow.
Did You Know: The man who coined the term “Blue Monday” actually intended the phrase to “inspire people to take action and make bold life choices?” – The Independent