How to Improve Your Mood This Winter

Winter in Australia (especially in the southern states!) can bring colder days and longer nights, but your mood doesn’t have to drop with the temperature.

Here are some practical tips to help you stay happier this winter.

Say Hi to the Sun

A lack of natural sunlight can be a real mood dampener! Not only does sunlight give us a good, healthy dose of vitamin D, but it also helps produce serotonin—a happiness hormone in our brain. So, when your exposure to sunlight lowers, you might find your mood is lower, too. How do you beat the darkness? Well, there’s no perfect solution. But start by making a real effort to go outside during daylight hours, even for a short walk in a local park. Or, if going outside isn’t an option, try creating a cosy nook near a sunny window so you can sit and soak up as much natural light as possible.

Hot tip: dirty windows block a whole heap of healthy sunlight. Give your windows a good clean for best results.

Stay Connected

Social connections are so important, especially during the colder months when we might feel more isolated. Right from the first frost, actively stay in touch with friends and family; schedule regular phone calls, arrange video chats, and pencil-in meetups, if possible. Even a short conversation can brighten your day and help you feel more connected. Joining a local club can also offer a sense of community and connection when the days are grey. Never underestimate the power of togetherness!

Take Care of Yourself

Did you know that foods can influence good moods? A diet full of veggies, fruits, and whole grains can provide essential nutrients that support your overall health and mood. Avoiding excess sugar and processed foods can also help prevent energy crashes and mood swings. While you’re at it, why not assess your sleep schedule, too? Most adults (including older adults) need around 7 to 9 hours of quality sleep every night. And with good sleep comes good mental health and emotional wellbeing. So, start prioritising your sleep and nutrition and you’re on your way to beating the winter blues!

Note: always wear sunscreen and follow safe sun exposure practices when outdoors, even in winter, and consult your GP before making any changes to your diet.