Indoor Activities (For Everyone, Including Seniors!) To Help Beat The Winter Blues
When winter hits, many of us tend to go into hibernation mode. It’s a natural instinct, since the shorter days and colder weather make being outside less than ideal sometimes. However, the urge to stay inside can lead to isolation and feelings of loneliness during the winter months. Thankfully, there are some easy things you can do to keep your spirits high throughout the season and keep the winter blues at bay.
Brighten Your Space
Vitamin D from the sun can really elevate your mood. Make a point to open your curtains and soak up as much daylight as you can. Get outside and go for a short walk if you can. If you still aren’t getting enough light, you might want to purchase a light therapy lamp, which simulates natural light and can give your mood a boost.
Lean Into Literature
There’s nothing quite like curling up with a blanket, a cup of hot cocoa, and a good book. Try setting a winter reading goal to give yourself a bit of a challenge. You might try to finish a series, aim to read all the Pulitzer winners from a specific decade, or accept recommendations from loved ones. You don’t have to leave the warmth of your home to join a book club. You can Google “Virtual Book Clubs” to find a wide assortment for you to choose from.
Arts and crafts are good for the soul at any age, and many find that taking up a creative hobby is the perfect way to add color to a cold winter’s day. From knitting, needlepoint, woodworking and painting to DIY projects and holiday-themed crafts, there’s a limitless range of options for getting those hands moving and the creative juices flowing. If you give yourself a new interest to look forward to and concentrate on, you’ll keep your mind active.
Exercise, while important all year round, can be vital to lifting you up during the winter months. By working out daily, you can heighten their mood, increase their energy levels, and increase balance (always an issue as you get older). Seniors will find this especially useful to reduce their risk of falling. While the winter weather might make it harder for you to get out and go for a walk, there are still plenty of ways you can stay active indoors. Try to move your walk indoors, perhaps to a mall or a community center with an indoor track. You can also do low impact exercises at home, such as stretching, yoga, tai chi, weightlifting, or exercise videos specifically designed for your fitness level and age group.
Your diet is just as important as exercise. Eating a balanced diet is essential as you get older and is a natural way to boost your mood and energy. Provide your body with the right combination of proteins, carbohydrates, dairy products, fruits and vegetables. Avoid the temptation to chow down on unhealthy snacks, and instead, snack on complex carbohydrates and super foods such as hummus, blueberries and Greek yogurt. Also, don’t forget to drink your 8 glasses of water a day!
Keep in touch
Cold winter days can lead to spending a significant amount of time indoors. Combat feelings of isolation or loneliness by taking the time to reach out to friends and family who may live far away. A free Skype or Google+ account lets anyone video chat using their computer or laptop, or if you have an iPhone, you can video chat via Facetime with others who have iPhones. Set up regular video chat dates with family or old friends during times of the day when convenient for your group. Not only does connecting with others benefit your overall well-being, it also gives you something to look forward to during seasonally darker days.
If you (or a senior that you know) are struggling with the winter blues, remember that you are not alone. Many adults struggle with depression during this time of year and can often be helped by medical professionals. If you know a Senior who may need assistance at this time of year, I can help. In addition to examining appropriate senior living options, I can provide help with companion care in the home. Contact me via the number and email listed below. I’d love to help!