5 Ways to Stay Happy This Winter

We’re still over a month away from the true first day of winter. But in the Midwest, we’ve already experienced two heavy snow falls (the first on Halloween!) and record-breaking cold temperatures.

Needless to say, there’s quite a bit of grumbling going on around Pearl. So we thought we’d ask our Pearl Wellness Committee their suggestions for remaining upbeat during the cold, dark winter months.

Savor the Season

Executive Assistant Dawn Hinds says the secret to embracing winter is savoring the season. She suggests bundling up to take a brisk walk or play in the snow. “The fresh air is good for you and will help energize your mind and body.”

And if you truly can’t stand the cold, there’s plenty of seasonal activities to do inside. Enjoy a cup of hot chocolate or a hot toddy, curl up with a book next to a crackling fire, or bake cookies.

Learn to enjoy rather than dread what this season brings, and the positive thoughts will start outweighing the negative.

Heat Up with Hot Yoga

Underwriter Christy Habel swears by hot yoga in the winter. “I absolutely love the classes at Jacaranda. They’re so warm and energizing!”

Hot yoga has numerous benefits beyond warming you up on a cold day. You can torch 400-600 calories in a single session, which can help counterbalance the consumption of holiday treats. It combats wintertime stiffness by increasing circulation in your muscles. And it can boost your mood—numerous studies have linked regular yoga practice to improved mental health.

Spend Time in a Salt Cave

Client Relations Account Representative Heather Guillory likes to visit our local salt cave in the winter months. “It’s totally relaxing and helps clear my mind.”

Salt caves are man-made caves constructed entirely of pink Himalayan salt and are designed to deliver a host of mental and physical benefits.

Suffer from dry winter skin? Sessions in the salt cave can help restore moisture. Unlike table salt, which is dehydrating, mineral salts have natural moisturizing properties that support the skin’s water balance by attracting moisture to the skin.

Plus, according to salt cave experts, “spending just 45 minutes inside a salt cave is roughly equivalent to spending two whole days at the beach!”

Verify Your Vitamin D Levels

Many Americans are deficient in vitamin D, also known as the sunshine vitamin, all year long. And in the winter, when the days are short and the skies are grey, our vitamin D levels tend to drop even further.

Such is the case for Vanessa Ray, assistant data marketing specialist. “I take a vitamin D supplement every winter to help combat seasonal affective disorder.”

Low levels of vitamin D have been linked not only to seasonal affective disorder, but also bone loss and an increased risk of Type 2 diabetes.

You can have your vitamin D levels checked by your doctor with a simple blood test. If your levels are low, your doc can help you determine the best way to bolster them, whether through a supplement or a change in diet.

Tackle Indoor Tasks

It’s a proven fact that humans are more productive when they’re happy. But it also works the other way around. Being productive can cause your mood to improve, leading to a more positive outlook on life.

Technician Stacy Bean understands this well. “I like to get things done inside the house that I’ve neglected in the summer because it’s too nice outside. This helps me feel productive which boosts my mood.”

Not sure what kinds of projects to tackle? Try deep cleaning, decluttering and reorganizing, or making small upgrades to your home. Or try something from this list of cold weather DIY projects.

You Can Beat Those Winter Blues

The winter months can be tough. And sometimes, it feels like they are never-ending. So don’t be too hard on yourself if you’re feeling a little down… and know that you aren’t alone.

Consider some of the above tips to help you stay positive and implement some of your own too. What are your favorite ways to keep the winter blues away? Let us know in the comments!

The Pearl Wellness Committee organizes health initiatives—like walking challenges, a crop swap, and fresh fruit Fridays—to help support employees’ physical and mental wellbeing.

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