Published on January 18, 2023

Take Care Out There

Blue Monday recently passed on January 16, and although it has been debunked as a marketing gimmick, it can be an especially hard time of year for people. This could be related to the end of the holiday season, higher than normal credit card bills, pressure from New Year’s resolutions and the continuation of dark and cold days.

January can be a tough time and it’s important to recognize this so we can prioritize taking care of our mental health, and the mental health of those around us. 

Longer days are ahead of us (first official day of spring is March 20!) where the snow will melt, the sun will warm us up and the first tree and flower buds will bring a smile to our hearts. We have that to look forward to and until then, here are some quick little ways that you can add more joy to your winter days.

Writing in journal

Walking along Children's Bridge

  1. Get outside! Although the weather has certainly been up and down these past few weeks, find some time to get outside and breathe in the fresh air. Whether you’re working from home or are back in the office, a lunchtime walk can be a great way to reduce stress and re-energize your mind for the rest of the day ahead.
  2. Find some time for yourself. Easier said than done as many of us navigate the world of overlapping roles (parent, teacher, employee, nurse, spouse, friend), but even just 20 minutes at the beginning or end of the day to reconnect with yourself and do something you enjoy can add fun, fulfillment and renewed purpose to the day, in amongst the weight and stress of the outside world.
  3. Power down. In a time when many of us are in front of our screens for meetings, managing day-to-day tasks, placing grocery orders, visiting with friends and family and just general social media use, one of the best things you can do for your brain is disconnect for a little while. Before bedtime, calm your mind and settle in for sleep by choosing to do a bit of journalling. Getting worries, stresses or hopes for days to come down on paper will help clear your head so you can enjoy a more peaceful sleep. The words will be there for you tomorrow if you still need them, and if you don’t, they’re no longer taking up space in your thoughts.

While these may have been just a few examples of ways to focus on self-care this month (view the full list of 30 Days of Self-Care), the most important thing to remember is to seek support when you need it. Mental well-being is an important part of your personal health and it is critical to maintaining balance in your life.

Small steps can have big impacts, but more than that, if you are struggling, reach out. Help is available. There are people you can connect with who are committed to your well-being and you are not alone! You might be amazed at how a listening ear can help you feel better.

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Last edited: January 18, 2023