Today is Bell’s Let’s Talk day, and in keeping with their tempo, we’re looking to talk about mental health and how the long, dark, cold winters of Nova Scotia impact it. Chances are, if you already deal with anxiety, stress, mental illness or depression during the year, winter can make things that much more difficult for you.
If any of the above hits close to home, there are things one can do and preparations one can make to combat that feeling. Here are our top tips for handling an east coast winter, happy and healthy:
- Remain active. Naturally, being active is important throughout the year, but the winter months’ render some of our daily regiment impossible. Consider snowshoeing, cross-country skiing, yoga, or a walk on the treadmill. Keeping your body in motion will work magic for your endorphins.
- Consume a healthy dose of vegetables. Cheesy, rich pasta dishes and dense meals are comfort food to the extreme, and we all seek out comfort during winter. Strive to fill your plate with greens and colourful winter vegetables to compliment that density, and your body and mind will thank you for it. It’s that easy.
- Face the cold and get outside. OK so this one’s less about the cold (although it is a factor) and more about soaking in as much sunlight as possible during this time of year. It’s a vitamin integral to your mental health, and it can be as effortless as going for a walk or hitting the ski hill. Now might be the best time to pick up Pokémon Go!
- Kick the isolation. Yeah, you’ve heard it before, but being with friends and family is huge. Isolating yourself is easy when the weather is unpleasant, but so often the easy thing is the incorrect thing when health is the topic of discussion. Go be with the ones who inspire you, and help them kick the isolation as well.
Winter is tough on all of us. The point of acknowledging that is to recall that you’re never alone, and that the initiatives you’re taking on are likely applicable to those close to you as well – so share them!
Contact us if you need any additional advice on how to feel your best both physically and mentally this winter. We’re always around to lend a helping hand, in person, online, or on the phone!