Blogpost: Blowing them blues away!

Screenshot 2019-02-16 at 07.47.00

Blowing them blues away!

By Laura Moxley

JANUARY doesn’t start in January. It actually starts in February. How can January possibly start in January when you still have half of Christmas laying around?

It is absolutely impossible to initiate the ‘new year, new me’ rule when you’re still surrounded by candy canes, and trays of dates. An additional three mince puddings balanced carefully on each other in the ‘food cupboard’ accompanied by tubes of pringles in every…single…flavour. Then there is the chocolate; tubs, boxes and slabs of the sweet, milky, nauseatingly delicious brown stuff that still decorates the kitchen table top. Let’s avoid talking about the fridge!

As if dealing with the immeasurable amount of food you have left oozing out of every cupboard in the kitchen isn’t a big enough job in hand, we then have to deal with the return to work. The unpredictability of the ‘beautiful’ British weather; mother nature forever changing her mood. (She is rather relatable really, given the January circumstances.) From sub-zero freezing conditions to the views of bruised clouds and harsh down pours of the wet stuff. We drag ourselves out of bed in the morning, to the sight of darkness and go about our day just managing to make it through to home time!

You’re not alone if waking up every morning and struggling to strike one foot in front of the other is harder work then it should be. When the middle of February hits, its time to bin those last few chocolates and officially start the new year!

Try these tips to help get you motivated.

Let the light in.

Every morning once you’ve unravelled yourself from the duvet, ensure you push back the curtains. The initial sight of light can be straining on the eyes but it does wonders for the soul. It also helps to

Constantly lift your mood. No matter the weather throwing back the curtains is a way of excepting the start of a new day. Embrace it!

Prioritize YOU.

Prioritize and organise your daily load. By this; ensure you have acquired enough time to devour three healthy meals. Time to read a book, or flick through the newspaper. Relish in a little you time. Fitting in self-care around work and relationships is key. Prioritizing yourself will help you to feel more balanced.

Eating well.

Wondering aimlessly around the supermarket can quite often lead you to buying all the wrong things, the bad things. Before you know it you’ve grabbed lots of ‘easy eat’ snacks and convenient food.

List – Create a weekly shopping list. This will help you to purchase only what you write on your shopping list and prevent you from veering off down the biscuit aisle. Be sure to add mixed berries; nuts, seeds and oily fish to your list. All of which are great low mood boosters.

Exercising.

Add exercise into your weekly routine. Start with three times per week. Taking a brisk walk, attending a yoga or dance class or joining the gym with a friend. Exercising is very good for our health. Not only can it help prevent health problems from occurring, it helps you to slim down and shape up. Boosts self-esteem and helps you too sleep better at night.

Relax.

Taking time to relax helps to slow your heart rate and gives you time to clear your mind. Feeling relaxed allows you to review current situations and boosts confidence to handle problems you may have to face. Studies suggest that meditation can benefit those who

One Response to "Blogpost: Blowing them blues away!"

  1. Valen (Myles) Cook   February 19, 2019 at 5:16 am

    Note to Editor: There appears to be a missing section on this article as it ends abruptly mid-sentence. Any chance of the rest of it being posted?

    Laura Moxley: Good advice, however, your article makes some assumptions that it are an error to make.

    Firstly, you assume that everyone reading your article had the money to have the kind of extravagant Christmas that leads to loads of leftover goodies “oozing out of every cupboard in the kitchen”. This is not necessarily the case as there are many people who struggled to get the essentials for Christmas, let alone get the luxuries you describe, which makes your assumption offensive to those people. Some people may not have even had the money for the essentials and had to rely on whatever food they could get from the local foodbank.

    Your second assumption has to be that the readers of your article must have a normally healthy level of mental health given your statement that “You’re not alone if waking up every morning and struggling to strike one foot in front of the other is harder work then it should be”. For people with mental health issues, your statement represents the norm rather than a post-Christmas exception. At least you didn’t make the error of using the term ‘depression’ to describe the post-Christmas blues you refer to in the article because there is no comparison between the two.

    You also assume that your readers even celebrate Christmas in the first place as the entire piece is about the post-Christmas blues rather than a generic winter malaise that can affect everyone regardless of Christmas. Your advice would be equally helpful to the normally mentally healthy non-Christmas celebrating person who may be put off by the references to Christmas to which you attribute the blues you want to help them blow away.

    As for the advice itself, throwing open your curtains to let the light in may have some beneficial quality but that all depends on the view outside your window that greets your gaze and, again, assumes a healthy baseline level of mental health that not everyone meets. If you have a mental illness, opening the curtains could be the worst thing for you if the world outside your window is a trigger for your condition.

    The advice to ‘prioritise you’ is a good one but one of the points within that section makes the assumption that the reader has enough money to “devour three healthy meals”. Time may not be the problem, money, for some families at least, is. Some families can’t even manage three healthy meals a week for all the members of their family with some adults going hungry so their children can eat. Reading a newspaper or a book may be impossible for some people not because they can’t read but because they can’t concentrate for long enough to make it a pleasurable experience and, for some people with mental ill-health, reading a newspaper can trigger a mental health crisis so I wouldn’t have included that in the things you could read in the first place.

    Your ‘eating well’ section also makes the assumption that the reader has the income to make the healthy choices when buying food when that isn’t necessarily the case as healthy foods tend to cost more than the stuff they can actually afford but is nutritionally questionable. That is not to say that the section doesn’t have a genuine point about eating healthily but does make the assumption that people always have a choice when purchasing food items.

    The section on exercising makes the assumption that the reader has a level of mobility that allows them to exercise in the first place or that they have the money to attend a gym or exercise class. There are some ways of getting free gym memberships through your GP and there may be some free exercise classes but there is also the problem of whether they are accessible by whatever forms of transport the reader may have access to. If a person can’t get to the locations of gyms or free classes, the fact that they are free doesn’t really matter.

    Your final section on relaxing, again, has some merits but doesn’t take into account people with mental health conditions. While it is true that relaxing slows your heart rate, it may not actually clear your mind as some people suffer with intrusive thoughts that creep into their mind whenever everything else has been expelled. Reviewing current situations may actually have the reverse effect for someone with mental ill-health both in terms of relaxation and boosting confidence. Finally, you are correct that meditation can benefit some people but there are some people who it doesn’t benefit because of existing mental health issues that may also be resistant to treatment.

You must be logged in to post a comment Login