How to Beat the January Blues

Hi Guys, today I am writing about how to beat the January blues. January can make even the happiest of person feeling down in the dumps. The dreary weather, being back in work, having the festive season end and having those credit card bills come in, can all contribute to the January blues. Below I have listed some ways to help beat the January blues.

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Start planning a holiday

While you are feeling the January blues, start thinking ahead to the summer and start planning a holiday. January is a great time to book a holiday as there are lots of deals to choose from. Planning a holiday can also give you a reason to start saving your money and it gives you something to look forward to.

You can start all of your research now, to help keep you excited about it. The anticipation of a holiday can make you feel excited by releasing endorphins, which are your bodies’ natural feel good hormones, or what I like to call them, our happy hormones.

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Identify what is making you feel down

A good tool to use when you are identifying what is making you feel down is the wheel of life. This is used a lot in life coaching, but it is a great tool to use when you are determining the areas in your life that is making you unhappy.

To start doing this, list out 8 areas of your life. Below is an example you can use:

  1. Your health
  2. Your money
  3. Your social life (including fun and recreation)
  4. Your partner/relationship
  5. Your work/career
  6. Your friends/family
  7. Your physical environment such as your home
  8. Your personal growth/spirituality. This could include your religion, interests, hobbies etc.

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Once all of the areas are filled in, give each area of your life represented above a score out of 10. The ones you score below five, take that area and try to focus on it.

For example, if your job was making you feel low, try to find ways to improve your situation. Possible ways could be speaking to your boss about your workload, or looking into other job opportunities.

Once you’ve identified the areas that are affecting how you are feeling, set goals for yourself to work towards, this will help to keep you motivated. This tool helps you to be proactive with the areas of your life that are making you feel down.

 

Start recognising your strengths

After New Year’s, a lot of us set out New Year’s Resolutions, which can be great! However these New Year’s resolutions can reflect our weaknesses and how we can fix them. Don’t forget to also recognise your strengths.

For example, look at everything that you have accomplished this past year, everything that you have gone through and made it through. Look at how much stronger you are because of these experiences. Once recognised you can focus on your strengths and how you can use them to live a happier life.

 

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Practice Gratitude

When you start to get stressed and depressed, stop and say “thank you” to anything. So, even if you’re feeling unhappy, there is always something you can be grateful for.  Thank your house, for providing you with four walls, comfort and warmth.

Thank your car, for continuing to start. Thank your job, even if you hate it, because it keeps you fed and clothed. This doesn’t mean you have to give up on achieving more, but get in the habit of acknowledging life’s little achievements.

 

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Try something new

Take up a hobby, something new that will challenge you, something that is also of interest to you. The month of January is a great time to try something new, as you more than likely have a lot more time on your hands as January can be a quiet month.

This will help to beat the January blues by keeping your mind occupied and also giving you a sense of accomplishment.

 

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Book a bargain hotel break

Treat yourself this January. I know budgeting is big for this month, but you can put aside a small amount of money each week and treat yourself in the last week of January.

January can also be a time for great bargain hotel breaks. So start looking out for them and remember to book them early as they can be cheaper.

 

Meet up with friends

Meeting up with friends doesn’t have to cost you. You can all meet up in someone’s house bringing one tasty treat each and catch up.

Or stay in with your friends with a bottle of wine and have a movie night, but don’t forget to meet up with them. Surrounding yourself with those you love can help to beat the January blues.

 

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These are easy tips to try out this month, but they can be extremely effective. I hope some of these tips will be of some benefit to you.

Niamh-Psychotherapist xx 

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