Beating your January Blues
January Blues are the worst part of winter. Christmas and New Year is over, the weather has taken a turn for the worse and it is months before you can think about having more than a weekend outside of work.
But they needn’t be that way. The New Year is a beautiful time for new beginnings, fresh starts and innovative approaches to the way you live your life. This year why not use one of these tricks to combat your January blues and begin the year on the right foot?
But whatever you do – don’t try running! If you want to fail before you start, don’t set yourself tasks like running at 6am before work three times a week – a great ambition but not the right approach. Many people fail at sticking to exercise because they choose a sport they want to enjoy, but don’t yet and in circumstances where they make the activity seem impossible to actually like.
Running is a difficult sport to get into, it takes commitment and a lot of training to be able to maintain a good speed for a good distance – you will not be encouraged by the cold January rains, waking up in the dark or the minus numbers and you will make yourself hate it before you can even get into it properly.
Instead choose a sport that you will like – love hitting the dance floor on a Saturday night? Why not join a local salsa club or pole dancing class – they take place in the warmth of the indoors, there will be likeminded people for you to meet and most importantly you will have fun.
If dancing is not your thing, join an amateur sports team – then you will be less likely to quit as you will be letting the team down, rather than yourself.
Start Meditating or Yoga
Meditating can make a huge difference to your life. Whether you do it alone, with your partner or with friends, it is proven to be one of the best things you can do to improve your wellbeing.
Set up a relaxing area in your home, think cushions, beautiful paintings, fairy lights and dream catchers – anything that can help you to relax. Then either with relaxing music, or complete silence, learn to empty your mind of every thought. As you get better at meditating, watch the change in your everyday life.
Yoga is a great tool for both your mind and body. Like meditating it helps you to empty your mind and not get caught up on things that don’t matter, however yoga has the added benefit of helping you to lose weight and improving your body’s flexibility, movement and digestion – when done correctly.
It needn’t cost the earth either – Youtube is full of videos and tutorials helping you to practice yoga in the comfort of your own bedroom, rather than in a studio full of women who look like they were born with one leg above their heads!
Don’t limit yourself from the things you love – it will only set you up to fail. Instead learn to love new things. Explore diets online that encourage endorphins and happy, healthy body functions. Invest in a new blender or juicer and switch one coffee, or one soft drink a day for something filled with chia, kale or beetroot – it may take a while to get used to but you will thank yourself later.
Avoid foods high in sugar, fat or salt, other than the occasional treat – they will only make you feel sluggish and stop your body from performing to its greatest capacity.
Invest in a New Wardrobe
Stop buying clothes that society wants you to wear. Instead buy things that look good on your body. Some of us simply don’t look nice squeezed into a pair of skinny jeans and a crop top – no matter what is hot on the catwalk.
Buying clothes that are made especially for your body shape, can have all the difference in how you feel about yourself when you step out the house – if you want to look good, ooze confidence and be happy in yourself, the trick is accepting yourself as you are and dressing in the best way to compliment you.
Choose clothes that express you – if you love bold and bright, don’t be afraid to dive on in and wear bold and bright. If you love dresses, don’t let society tell you who should wear them and who shouldn’t – if you look good and feel confident, no one can judge you.
Stop Giving Yourself Impossible Goals
The reason many of start the year on a bad note is we give ourselves unobtainable results and then punish ourselves for failing.
The chances are, you will not grow three inches, or lose 6 stone in as many months or meet the man of your dreams on the eve of Valentine’s Day – so stop giving yourself deadlines and regulations – simply set your goals and take them step by step, without the pressure of time lines.
If you want to lose weight, and get a promotion at work, and meet a new man, and start going out with your friends more, and try to visit your parents twice a month… It’s going to be way too much, and you will only scold yourself if you stumble.
Instead focus on what is most important – the promotion, your body image, seeing loved ones and once you have begun tackling one, and worked out how best to deal with what you would like to change, then you can begin thinking of the second most important.
Remember, “little by little” is the key to going far.
However you choose to combat your January blues, remember never to change yourself for anyone other than yourself and remember that in the end, the goal is happiness, not a job title, a dress size or the perfect man!