7 Ways to Escape the Winter Blues

Short days and freezing temperatures can make even the most cheerful people feel a bit blue. One cure for kicking the winter doldrums is getting out of the house for a change of scenery and to stimulate the body and mind. As a sufferer of depression, I can attest to how difficult being stuck in the house all winter can be on one’s health. Here are some great tips for getting motivated and beating the winter blues.

Check out what your local Parks & Recreation Center has to offer. Often popular during the summer months, most Parks & Rec organizations also have many winter activities. Local tour and event excursions, toddler play groups, plus indoor and outdoor activities on the weekends. Larger Parks & Recs may even offer seminars or craft sessions. Fees are usually very affordable or even free.

Seek out local town events. From cities to small towns, there are plenty of festivals to fill your winter weekends. Foodie events, ice carving festivals, and more can be found. Check your local news website or paper for listings of upcoming events in your area.

Visit your public library. Did you know most libraries have a lot more than just books these days? You can often find play groups and reading events for younger kids, speaker events or seminars in the evenings, and family events on the weekends. Many libraries have also been updated to offer comfortable seating areas with magazine collections and wifi where patrons can relax. This is also a great change of venue for people who work from home.

Discover some local history. You may be surprised at just how many bits of history there are to discover around town. Start with small local museums then branch out and search for iconic homes, historical markers, and unique relics that you likely drive past every day and never notice. We get so comfortable in our daily routines we often overlook what makes our own neighborhood or town special. This is a great opportunity to immerse kids in local lore.

Run around the park! No matter where you live it’s not too difficult to find a park; and if you’re lucky there are larger nature centers or State and National parks within a convenient distance. Despite the cold and gloomy days, there is still plenty to discover outdoors. Start with a trip to a nature center, a nice hike through the woods, or just take a leisurely stroll around and breathe in some fresh, crisp air.

Get involved in some winter sports. Need even more of a pick me up? Hit the slopes. Downhill or cross-country skiing, sledding, ice skating. There are several options for those who like to play in the snow. Get out in the backyard and build a snowman and toss some snowballs if you’re short on time.

Don’t like the cold but still want to stretch those muscles? Join a heath club or see if your local Parks & Rec offers exercise programs. Getting your body moving can boost your mood quite a bit, and hey it’s also good for you. Even taking a walk outside will help relieve some stress.

What do you do to beat the winter blues? Share your tactics for fighting off those cold and gloomy days in the comments section for all our readers.