While there are still a few weeks of winter left to go, there’s no doubt that the seasons are beginning to shift. The bluebells and snowdrops are beginning to rise from their dormancy, the days are getting longer, and the average daily temperature is beginning to lift– even if it is only by a couple of degrees. Given how quickly time passes, it’s fair to assume that we’ll be in spring in the blink of an eye.
Most of us say goodbye to winter with a cheerful wave and no more thought, delighting in the return to warmth and comfort. However, before you move into the new seasons, it’s worth asking yourself a few questions about winter– so you can be as well prepared as possible for winter 2018/19.
“Did I suffer any seasonal affective issues?”
Seasonal Affective Disorder is a much-maligned and misunderstood condition, but it can have a serious impact on your ability to function comfortably through the winter months. Think back over the winter period and evaluate:
- Your general mood– were you sadder than normal or more anxious?
- Your sleeping patterns– did you struggle to sleep, or sleep excessively?
- Your tiredness– did you experience daytime tiredness?
If you find yourself answering yes to any of the above, then it’s worth a discussion with your doctors, especially if these issues are beginning to ease as we move into spring. SAD can really compromise your mood and ability to rest over winter, so if you have seasonal affective issues, it’s worth the discussion. If you decide to investigate the medication route, you will need to begin taking your medication around August, so it’s worth making plans for such a circumstance and going for a medical consultation with the experience fresh in your mind.
“Was my warm home enough?”
Keeping our homes warm through winter is a necessity, but something many of us struggles to do — or at least, struggle to do without spending a fortune. If you took steps to improve your winter heating — such as installing a wood-burning stove or improving your insulation — now is the time to evaluate how successful these measures were.
If you found that your improvement measures didn’t quite hit the mark, then it’s worth investigating why and making notes for next winter. It may mean that you need to make new modifications, such as adding extra inches of insulation or looking to see which stove top fan is best for your needs. By planning for these changes now, you’ll have plenty of time to implement new strategies before next fall.
“Did I exercise enough?”
Exercise over the winter months is tough. Running outside isn’t an option when the temperature dips below freezing, the festive season places a huge demand on our time, and most people struggle with feelings of lethargy over winter anyway.
As a result, your commitment to getting enough exercise may have wavered over the winter months. If this is the case, you’ll need to strategize new plans for next year to ensure you keep your activity levels where you want them to be.
By evaluating the winter just passed, you can be sure of improving the winter to come. With your plans for next winter established, you can then move on, and focus on enjoying the long, warm days in the near future.
Disclosure: This is a contributed post.