I mentioned it briefly the other day, but if you follow me on instagram, you’ve likely seen that January came in like a lion here, and I’ve been struggling with the proverbial January slump. Between the abysmal weather we’ve had the last few weeks, ongoing restrictions, waiting for PCS information, and more, I’ve been struggling both mentally and emotionally. I reached out on Tuesday evening to see if anyone had any tips or advice that’s helped them beat the January slump, and I got some great information, so today, I’d love to share it with you!
5 Ways to Beat the January Slump
First and foremost, I want to acknowledge that I think it’s okay that we’ve all been in a slump at one point or another since quarantine began last March. We’re coming up on nearly a year of this new normal, and it’s hard. That needs to be honored and acknowledged because, as many sweet friends said, I think we need to give ourselves – and each other – a little more grace as we navigate these feelings. But onto the real meat here…
1 . Start a Gratitude Journal
I actually got this piece of advice a lot, and I really like it. It’s easy to get caught up in the chaos and lose sight of the little joys in life. So much good is still happening around us, even amid the noise and craziness, as well. The concept is simple; each evening (or morning), sit down and take notes about the good in your life so, when things seem too much, you have those to look back on.
Usually this is an easy one for me. I’ve always turned to exercise to boost my mood, but I’ve been in such a funk, even this has been hard. I’ve had to force myself to get out and run. Exercise takes different forms though. Meditate. Walk. Do yoga or barre. Swim if your pools are open. Clear your mind and move your body. As Elle Woods once said, “Endorphins make you happy!”
3. Try a Salt Lamp or Happy Lamps
Studies have shown that a significant decrease in sunlight and a lack of Vitamin D can drastically impact your overall mental and physical health. Trust me when I say that’s 100% true out here in the PNW when it rains from October through March. Kait mentioned a salt lamp, which is said to have certain healing properties that can boost mood, improve sleep, and more, while happy lamps mimic sunlight to enhance mood and focus – without harmful UV rays.
4. Focus on Self Care
I’ve spoken about self care on the blog quite a few times, but self care looks different for different people. Perhaps you feel better when you have freshly-painted nails. Or maybe it’s a bubble bath and a good book. Whatever self care looks like for you, invest the time and energy into it so that your body and mind feel refreshed and alive – and ready to give more.
5. Give Yourself Some Space (and Grace)
This one was a common theme from those giving advice, and they’re right. Sometimes it’s okay to acknowledge you’re in a slump or a rut. Sometimes it’s important to simply sit in that knowledge and honor that part of your journey. It’s okay not to be 100% all of the time. In fact, it’s normal. Don’t try to be in a different mindspace than you’re in right now; instead, honor that part of the process, and slowly work your way through it.
If you, too, are suffering from post-holiday blues, COVID exhaustion and a generally blah mood, I hope that these tips help you beat the January slump. I think it’s a very real thing, and I’m so grateful for the advice I’ve received because it’s not a good feeling!
Tell me – how are you doing?