After a whirlwind of holiday parties and family get-togethers, the month of January can feel a bit anticlimactic. Not to mention cold and dark if you live in the Northeast. In addition to seasonal affective disorder plaguing many people, the “January Blues” manifests itself as sadness or depression-like symptoms after the holiday season. So, how do you keep yourself motivated and positive during the month of January? Laura Arndt compiled her top 10 tips to help you navigate and even look forward to the beginning of the year!
Plan a Low-Key Outing With Friends
Quality time with your friends is great way to decompress after the holidays and make the cold Winter month more enjoyable. Set aside some time on the weekends for a movie or to grab coffee, and you’ll be giving yourself something to look forward to all week!
Take a Warm-Weather Vacation
Take a long weekend and escape to somewhere tropical, or at the very least warm and sunny. Soak up some vitamin D, read a good book, and refresh your body and mind with a little affordable getaway. You’ll come back ready to start of the new year with a bang!
Follow Through on Your News Year’s Resolutions
All too often we start with full force on our New Year’s resolutions only to fall off the wagon by mid-month. Since it takes about two months to truly change a behavior, commit to following through all of January and you’ll be halfway to a new-and-improved lifestyle.
If you’re feeling burned out after the holidays, you’re not alone! Between family obligations, gift shopping, and end-of-year work goals, it’s natural to be running on empty come January. You won’t regret taking some time to treat yourself and decompress in those first few weeks of the new year.
Learn Something New
Maybe you want to brush up on a new language or read about how to start your own design business. Chances are, there’s something you’ve wanted to study up on but just haven’t made the time in recent years. Take the month of January and improve your knowledge base by setting aside a little time each day to develop a new skill.
Redecorate a Room
Once the Christmas decorations have been put away and the tree comes down, take some time to reorganize and revamp a spot in your house. Make sure there’s limited clutter and add a pop or color and maybe even a houseplant! An article in the Journal of Environmental Psychology showed certain flowering houseplants can reduce stress and anxiety levels, making it the perfect addition to your favorite room in January.
Keep a Positivity Journal
Spend 5 minutes every morning or evening listing things you are grateful for. Keeping a gratitude journal will help you stay calm, focused, and self-aware and is an easy practice that reaps a lot of rewards.
Volunteering can make you feel happier and offers social interaction all while making a difference for a cause you believe in. Many people are focused on charity around the holidays, but charities and organizations need help year round. Finding a spot or cause to support will help you establish a sense of purpose in the month of January, putting your best foot forward in the new year.
Clean and Declutter
Who said you need to wait until Spring to get your apartment in order? You can declutter and start the year off with a fresh and clean look and feel. You’ll feel motivated to get things done every time you walk in the door and see your shiny space.
Healthy Post-Holiday Detox
If you’re like most people, the month of December can be a time of overeating and drinking, leading to holiday weight gain and feeling lethargic. Taking a couple of days to focus on your nutrition and fill up on fruits, vegetables, healthy fats, and lean protein will help you eliminate the holiday bloat and provide good energy for the entire month.