Struggling to beat the winter blues? Here's how to embrace the colder months

A london street with cars covered in snowAs the days get shorter, it gets dark earlier and the temperature drops, many of us (myself included) find ourselves battling with the dreaded winter blues, otherwise known as Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD). Living in the UK means we know these days oh too well. It's therefore imperative that we acknowledge these feelings, recognise it is a medically recognised condition and actively look for ways to lift our mood during the coming colder months.

SAD is a type of depression that generally occurs during the colder months. It can leave you feeling lethargic, moody, and just a bit blah!

In this post, I'll cover some ways to help get through these winter blues and create a cosy, uplifting atmosphere within the comfort of your home.

Understanding the Winter Blues: Signs and Symptoms

Before we look at solutions, I think it's important to recognise the signs of SAD. They can often manifest as persistent feelings of sadness, a lack of energy, difficulty concentrating, and changes in sleep patterns.

Statistics on Seasonal Affective Disorder

Did you know that millions of people worldwide experience SAD each year? So if you suffer with it, you're not alone, you're not just “making it up”.

Hygge: A Swedish Approach to Winter Well-being

A colleague recently told me about hygge, which is the Swedish art of embracing winter. Hygee (pronounced “hoo-guh”) is a word in Danish and Norwegian that describes a “cosy, contented mood evoked by comfort and conviviality”. It encourages creating a sanctuary within our homes, filled with soft blankets, warm lighting, and comforting scents.

Hygee is more than a concept for the Danish, it's a way of life. A way of slowing down and focusing on life’s simple pleasures. It’s a form of self-care and mindfulness that can boost your well-being – even in the depths of winter! It’s about living in the moment, taking pleasure from the presence of soothing things, and being grateful for the simple things in life that bring you joy.

It's also one of the reasons attributed to why Denmark consistently comes out as one of the happiest nations in the world despite its cold weather.

Transform Your Home and Mood with Natural Fragrances

One effective way to enhance your home’s ambience, create a sanctuary and lift your mood is through the use of natural home fragrances. Consider incorporating wax melts, room sprays, and diffusers into your daily routine. This could be having a diffuser by the front door so you are greeted by your favourite scent when you come home. Melting a wax melt after a long day and curling up with a blanket and a hot drink. Or give your bedsheets a spritz before going to bed. Taking this type of holistic approach can help to transform your home, aid in your mental well-being and provide a much-needed respite from the winter blues.

The Power of Smell

Scents like lavender and eucalyptus are known for their calming and refreshing properties, making them great choices for the winter months. Cinnamon, vanilla, and citrus scents can help ease stress and increase your mood. These are of course just suggestions and you can have fun experimenting with different fragrances to find what resonates best with you.

Beating The Blues

Beating the winter blues involves a multi-faceted approach that addresses both our physical and emotional well-being. Embracing hygge principles and incorporating natural home fragrances can work wonders in creating a warm and uplifting atmosphere. So, this year let's try to embrace winter by being mindful and creating our own cosy and inviting sanctuaries at home.

Explore BU's collection of natural, vegan friendly home fragrances for a winter experience infused with hygge.

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