Those storms are raging outside, the snow is thick on the ground, high winds threaten outside and that constant heavy rain is your soundtrack both day and night.
The trains are cancelled, the buses aren’t running and there’s nothing you can do except from sit and watch it through that window.
Whether we live in the sub-tropics or more temperate climates, most of us have found ourselves ‘climbing the walls’ at home, trapped whilst the weather goes crazy outside.
We get increasingly angsty, grouchy, lethargic and irritable until you feel you’re ready to either kill or emigrate! I know I have!
But there’s absolutely no need to let winter cabin fever get the better of you and force you to become some kind of angry monster from hell!
Here’s how you can not only survive cabin fever but also banish it for the whole season.
#1: Create a window ‘den’
Natural light is an absolute saviour when the weather is stopping you from getting outside as it helps lift your mood, regulate your body clock and keep you feeling vaguely human despite the lack of fresh air.
An awesome way to do this is to create a window ‘den’.
If you’re like me, this means throwing some big cushions on the floor, gathering some blankets, making a large warm cup of tea and snuggling in with my son and a good book. Natural light and cuddles at the same time- what more could you ask!
If you’re not a floor person like me, you can get the same benefits from moving your furniture next to the window, whether that is your bed or even a simple chair.
#2: Get outside
Even if it’s not exactly great weather, you can still wrap up nice and warm or don waterproofs and take a walk or run somewhere.
This will help to shift that sluggish feeling by getting your blood flowing, exposes you to that all-important natural light and you might even bump into a friendly face that you know. I’m still out of action thanks to my ankle injury but I ALWAYS welcome a walk (even that crazy volcanic trail you might have seen on Instagram!!)
If you’re in a large town or city and the weather is nasty, you can even go visit a local attraction, head to some fun indoor activities, go to a gig, take a yoga class, visit the library or even head to a local healthy cafe for lunch.
Lift your mood, get active and do something productive by having a good ol’ clear out!
Most of us have far too many possessions that just sit there taking up space, getting dusty, demanding our attention, wasting our time and depriving the world of resources.
And not just that- did you know that your stress hormones actually spike when you’re faced with all that clutter? What better reason do you need to tidy up?
So instead, I’d highly recommend that you look at each thing you own, ask yourself if you love it or if it brings value to your life and then decide to keep, sell or donate to charity.
#4: Learn something new
What about embracing the time inside instead of fighting it by learning something new? I know that welcoming being inside might be easier said than done (especially for me) but it’s certainly worth a shot.
Do this and you’ll feel much more in control of your life, feel happier, have something to keep you busy and you’ll actually have something to show for those long days inside.
So take your bucket list, or your list of goals for this year and start working on them now! For me this has meant working harder on my Portuguese, taking my yoga practice to a whole new level and working harder on this website. 🙂
#5: Read your socks off!
Sure- it’s a bit of a cliche, but I really believe that winter storms are a brilliant excuse to escape with a good book for an hour or two.
You can catch up on all those books you keep meaning to read ‘one day’, find a brilliant book challenge you can take part in, read your way around the world, or even attempt to read the classics if you’re feeling REALLY brave!
Oh and by the way, I don’t want to hear about you feeling guilty for relaxing like that- you deserve it!
#6: Practice winter blues-beating yoga!
Yoga will always be my ‘go-to’ when I’m feeling sluggish and generally ‘yuck’!
Luckily there are several brilliant 30 minute yoga practices on YouTube that will stretch your muscles and ease out those knots we get from sitting all day, lift your mood and get your blood flowing. Here are two of my favourites. Give them a go!
Yoga with Adriene – Yoga for the Winter Blues
Ekhart Yoga- Yoga for the Winter Blues
#7: Eat better
You don’t need me to tell you that it’s oh-so easy to find yourself binging on junk food when the weather isn’t great outside.
But it’s SO important that you resist the tempting call of crisps, cakes, cookies and other high-fat, high-sugar and high-chemical foods and feed your soul with wholesome stuff instead.
Because whilst it might feel good to stuff yourself with junk at the time , before long you’ll only feel sick, guilty and yuck!
That’s not to mention to fact it’s all empty calories, damaging to your overall health and will leave you even more vulnerable to low moods, hormonal imbalance and depression.
Instead fill up on lots of lovely warm vegetable and lentil soup, drink herbal teas, make sure you’re getting your 10-a-day by piling your plate with plenty of fruits and veggies and don’t forget those healthy proteins like beans, lentils, nuts and seeds for added goodness.
Take it from me- you CAN survive cabin fever this winter and not go completely crazy. You just have to put these great tips into action and make your winter completely awesome.