and how to make the best of it
by Gabi Anderson Courtney
Not a fan of winter? Well, I never met a person who was.
Having said that, winter has some advantages, but you can also learn to turn the things you hate about winter to something to take advantage of.
Here are a few ideas how.
Book a spa appointment.
You'll escape the cold and forget how miserable it is outside. Spas are designed to make you relaxed and an attending a spa can be a great stress reliever.
Arrange some pampering for yourself and your mood will improve despite the grey skies.
Cuddle your pet.
It will build your relationship and it's also a great stress reliever. Cuddling your pet increases levels of oxytocin, a neurotransmitter that helps the body cope with stress.
Did I mention that it feels good and your pet will love it?
We all feel hungry more often when it's cold and it's important to chose the right food.
Dig into a hearty Mexican fiesta. Whip up a Hungarian goulash. Make a big bowl of gluten-free pasta with home-made tomato sauce. Or find a restaurant to take the family to, or to catch up with friends.
Take a bath.
Add lots of bubbles, light some candles, grab a glass of wine and a book. It is a mini escape - it is always important to have some "me-time", but it is even more important during winter. Your mood will improve, taking a bath has many health benefits and you will resurface invigorated and relaxed.
Work out or go for a run.
I know, I know, it's not your idea of fun. Trust me, it's not mine either, but you will be grateful once spring comes around and your summer body will be ready. Remember, summer bodies are made in winter.
Besides that, exercise will increase your energy levels and will greatly help with weight loss.
Go to a bar and order a fancy cocktail.
Nothing says summer like cocktails. It will help you remember that summer is not far away and it will boost your mood. By the way, on the photo it's a Fairy Floss Martini that I had at Sydney Olympic Park last winter. Horribly packed with sugar, but sometimes that might be exactly what you need to beat the winter blues.
Grab someone you love and treat them for dinner.
Double brownie points here; you are also treating yourself while making someone else feel special. Cold winter evenings are great for cozy dinners and chats.
Even better, turn up with a small gift, like a scented candle, a nice hand cream or a special bottle of wine.
Listen to some music.
Music can change your mood in an instant, choose songs that are uplifting; make a playlist and hit play.
Pick whatever makes you happy, it's different for everyone. Me? Nothing can change my mood more from miserable to happy in about 5 seconds than the Village People.
Give your skin care routine a boost.
As we get older, our skin changes as well, and winter can take its toll.
Make sure you incorporate a good quality serum, a heavier moisturizer to give your skin a boost, and look after your lips and hands too.
Change your hair.
Ok, I know it's a bold step, but sometimes it might just be what you need. You will feel like a new woman, and a change is as good as a holiday. Trust me, you will walk out of that salon with a new spring in your step.
And finally, can't take it anymore? Take a holiday!
I'm up for a trip anytime, but winter is when my feet get very itchy to jump on a plane and go somewhere warm. Even if it's just a short trip, get on that plane and treat yourself.
Your soul will thank you for it.