If it’s been a cold, snowy winter where you live, you may have a serious case of Cabin Fever by now. I promise, spring is just around the corner. Until then, here are some ways to banish those feelings of restlessness and irritability that come from being cooped up inside too long.
1. Get Outside – The best cure for being inside too much is to go outside. Yes, it’s cold and there’s snow everywhere. Don’t let it stop you. Bundle up in the proper layers and embrace winter. The fresh air, sunshine and wide open views are invigorating. The landscape is beautiful when it’s frosted with a fresh coat of snow. This is especially true in Michigan. The forests are gorgeous when tree branches are dripping with snow and ice. The lakeshore turns into an otherworldly place of ice formations and frozen lighthouses. It beats staring at the four walls in your house all day.
2. Exercise – You still need plenty of exercise in the winter. You can do it indoors, but it’s a good way to get in that time you need outdoors. It’s as simple as finding a shoveled walk in town and taking a stroll. Of course you can always take advantage of all that snow. Strap on some snowshoes, go cross country skiing or downhill skiing. One of the best things about Michigan is that each season comes with new opportunities for outdoor recreation.
3. Spend Time with Friends and Family – Being at home all winter can lead to isolation and loneliness. Be sure to make an effort to connect with family and friends. If you need to get out of the house, go out for dinner together at a cozy restaurant or see a movie. If you really don’t want to leave your house, have folks come to you. Invite them over for game night and serve then your favorite comfort foods. Michiganders are partial to Euchre games.
4. Maximize Sunlight – Depending on what part of the country you live in, you may not see a lot of sun in the winter. This is definitely a struggle in Michigan. The key is to maximize the sunlight that is available. If you see the sun peek out of the clouds, try to get outside. At home, open the curtains and blinds during the day to let in what light is available. Position furniture like your couch or desk so that it’s near a window. If you work in a windowless office, try getting a Happy Light for your desk. It simulates sunlight and helps combat fatigue and improves your mood.
5. Get Out and About – If you really don’t want to be outside, you can still find plenty of things to do besides sit at home. A change of venue is good for everyone. Go out to eat, go to a movie, have dinner at a restaurant. Or do something you don’t regularly do like visit a museum or see a theater production. Maybe because of our long winters, Michigan has plenty of indoor entertainment venues.
6. Learn Something New – One of the best ways to combat boredom is to learn something new. In Michigan, many communities have local art centers that offer classes. This could be the winter you learn how to paint with oil pastels. Libraries often offer classes as well on everything from computers to genealogy research. If you need a way to get exercise, learn a new winter sport like ice skating. For home bodies, there plenty of courses you can take online now. Websites like Masterclass.com offer affordable courses in everything from cooking to singing from favorite celebrities like Gordon Ramsey and Christina Aguilera.