How to survive the winter blues

Even if you’re the kind of individual who keeps the decorations and tree up right up the last minute there comes a point when it’s time to let go of Christmas. When that happens, when life returns to what seems like dull normality, the opening months of the year can seem like hard work.

The weather is still cold, the nights (and mornings) still dark, and by and large, everyone seems to be in some sort of hibernation – complaining of no money and not wanting to socialise. So, how can you beat the winter blues? Here are a few suggestions:

Plan your yearMake January a productive month by planning the rest of your year. If you have no real plans to do much in the month itself, get organised by filling diaries for the coming months. Book a restaurant for you and a group of friends, arrange a weekend away or put down a deposit on a summer holiday.

Tackle a projectTake your focus away from the dropping temperatures by occupying your mind with a new project. This might be installing a new bathroom suite, decorating your living room, or planning a garden refurbishment as soon as spring arrives. Remember, a logbook loan from Car Cash Point can help to fund some projects.

Take up a new hobbyWhy not make 2015 the year you discover a new interest? Think about what might be missing from your life, and fill it with a new skill. That could be committing to a series of fitness classes, or a gym membership, or enrolling in an art class, or a photography class. You could learn to cook Spanish tapas, or take a language course: Italian for beginners, for example.

Clear the mindA new year is a chance to clear the decks and start afresh. If you’re spending a fair bit of time indoors, due to the chilly weather, use it wisely by de-cluttering your house. Go through cupboards which are crammed to bursting, sort through clothes you no longer wear or which don’t fit any more. Dispose of genuine rubbish in your nearest recycling centre, donate goods in decent condition to charity, and sell others either online or at car boot sales. Generate some extra money and generally feel good about yourself.

Eat well, sleep wellYour mood can be influenced to a certain degree by diet and sleep. If the final month of 2014 saw you over indulge in rich food and too much alcohol, and too many late nights, restore the balance in the first few weeks of 2015. Phase out the junk, bring in fruit and vegetables, and cut down on the booze. Be in bed by 11pm during the working week and get at least seven hours of good quality sleep every night: you’ll feel perkier and brighter, and overall more positive about life as a result.

Treat yourselfThe winter period doesn’t mean you should hide away from life, and sulk. Make sure you still socialise and see friends. It needn’t be anything extravagant or expensive: meet up for brunch or coffee on a Saturday, take the kids to the cinema on a Sunday afternoon. Make sure you enjoy yourself when you can, and winter will fly by.