The festive season is behind us and it’s ‘Back to Normal’ now.
Here we are at the end of January already. For a lot of people a dreary, long month.
It’s easy to become caught up in the narrative that everyone feels the same and it’s just the time of year that’s making you feel low. It’s easy to blame it on the obvious causes like a low bank balance after Christmas. Or the miserable weather and dark evenings.
Why We Feel Down in January?
Prof Ed Watkins, Director of the Mood Disorders Centre at Exeter University, throws some light on the way many of us may feel at this time of year.
“Depressed mood is often exacerbated by a perception of a gap between how someone wants things to be and how they actually are. These actual-ideal discrepancies are highlighted at this time of year.”
“Some people can also negatively compare how they are now with what they used to be able to do, or what they hoped they would have achieved by now, and this can lower their mood.”
Our New Year Resolutions may have fallen by the wayside and it’s all just doom and gloom. Our mood dips and our mental health can suffer.
10 Tips to Banish the January Blues
The good news is we can improve our mood and lift our spirits. With a little know how! Small steps in the right direction can make a huge difference to how we feel.
1. Social connections – Interaction with friends and family is essential, especially at times of stress. If you need to ask for help. Ask a friend, family member or health professional. Ask someone!
2. Physical activity – Exercise is a well-recognised way to release positive chemicals in the brain
3. Light – Get as much daylight as possible. Lack of daylight is one of the reasons for the “winter blues”
4. Sleep – Prioritise sleep. The body needs sleep to process emotional issues
5. Relaxation – Reduce stress by taking time to relax. Take short breaks during the day
6. Diet – Eat well – a diet that is good for physical health is also good for mental health
7. Less alcohol – reduce your alcohol intake to within the recommended daily allowance
8. No drugs or smoking
9. Use your strengths – we are all good at something! When we tap into our strengths it gives us confidence and helps us to think positive
10. And finally…. Beware of New Year Resolutions!
Setting goals is important to activate change But setting a goal will only work if you really want to do it.
If you’re setting a goal out of a sense of ‘I should do this’ or because other people want to you to make a change, it probably won’t work. Failure to achieve that goal will bring you down.
What if I can’t shift the January Blues?
Don’t wait until you find yourself struggling or in a crisis situation. You need to make your mental health a priority.
If your issues are complicated or you feel like you can’t pick yourself up, you may need additional support. Solution Focused Hypnotherapy is one way of accessing additional support.
Solution Focused Hypnotherapy uses practical, modern, and well-researched techniques to help people make significant, positive changes in their lives in a relatively short period of time.
My Solution Focused Hypnotherapy sessions help you find and focus on your own, achievable solutions.A mix of Clinical Hypnotherapy, Solutions Based Brief Therapy and Psychotherapy to helps you to relax, to let go of your worries and anxieties, and to get back on track.
I now offer online sessions as well. These can be just as effective as seeing me in my practice. Online sessions have the added benefit of being in the comfort of your own home with no need to travel.
Contact me if you would like to find out more about Solution Focused Hypnotherapy and how it might help you.