Tips to Brighten the Winter Blues

Winter months can be a difficult time, with the bitter cold days, the snow storms, and treacherous ice, however, this time of year does not have to be filled with dreary thoughts of loneliness and boredom. Major depression can set in and most seniors do not seek treatment for depression symptoms and end up suffering needlessly.

If you dread trying to fill the hours in the short daylight we have in the winter, here are some tips to keep you focused, busy and before you know it, spring will be here!

Get Up and Get Going! – Physical activity can be a variety of things, fromdoing household chores to following along with a TV or workout video or completing exercises out of a magazine or book. When the roads and sidewalks are dry a nice winter walk can be energizing and beautiful. Go to the nearest mall and join the many “mall” walkers for exercise and companionship. Check out the Y programs for the Silver Sneaker Clubs.

Do Your Spring Cleaning in January – Cleaning and organizing your home, closets and drawers are a good way get some physical activity, give you a sense of accomplishment and make it easier to be inside during the cold days. Hang your winter clothes hangers backwards and see what you really wear this winter. Sort through important papers – small steps are necessary for great strides. Get old papers shredded that contain identifying numbers like social security numbers or birth dates.

Get Out and Sit in the Sun – or sit by a window while the sun shines in… head to the public library, or a favorite coffee shop.

Stay Connected – if you’re feeling bored and lonely you can bet that your friends are feeling the same way. Talk by phone, make plans for lunch on the next clear day, invite them over for cards or board games in the late morning to early afternoon.Watch the weather reports and pick 1-2 days a week to meet friends/family for lunch, and on bad weather days ask a family member or friend to share a meal with you at home.

Beat the Gray – just because it’s gray outside doesn’t mean it has to be in your house. Brighten your favorite table with a flowering plant or some brightly colored silk flowers, wear brightly colored clothes or scarves, accent the kitchen and bathroom with bright colored towels; bring your love of gardening inside, plant an herb garden, plan out what your garden next spring will look like.

Learn Something New, Start a New Hobby – Keep your brain active! Volunteer to help others – like reading with children at the local elementary school, or rocking babies at the local hospital, walking dogs for the Humane Society if you are able.

Maintain a Healthy Diet -Veggies, Fruit, Whole Grains, Lean Protein (chicken, eggs, fish). Get out the crock pot, find new ways to make old comfort food recipes healthier, take advantage of the energy boosting, winter fruits and vegetables in season (squash, pumpkins, apples). Be sure to getOmega-3s, Vitamin D, Water (be sure to drink water throughout the day even if you don’t feel thirsty).

If you find you still can’t beat the winter blues – consider Moving Locations: Consider moving to a retirement community where you are surrounded by people, don’t have to worry about getting the snow cleared off the walks or falling on ice. Move to where there are people to share meals with and play cards, games, exercise, etc.

Call on a Senior Move Manager to help you with the sorting, downsizing, decision-making process. We are expert organizers, move managers and can help steer you in the right direction and make the process easier for you.

Betty White and Jeanine Plumhoff are Senior Move Managers, expert declutterers and have owned Smooth Transitions for 9 years. They can be reached at 303-674-0250, to set an appointment for a free, no obligation, one hour consultation.

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