With long evenings to take a walk, working from home can be a joy in summer but in the depths of winter, it can seem pretty bleak. These are our survival tips for a winter when many of us will be in the house.
Get outside in daylight hours
First of all, now is not the time for lunch at your desk. It’s really important to get outside, if only for 20 minutes a day. Sunny days are few and far between but you don’t need full sunshine to feel the benefits. More and more research points to the many benefits of daylight on our mental and physical health. We need Vitamin D from sunlight for strong bones and the exposure is really good to maintain healthy sleep patterns. Getting fresh air is scientifically proven to reduce stress levels and can lower blood pressure and heart rate. Spending time outdoors can boost our immune systems through contact with phytoncides from plants and increased serotonin benefits our mood. Just get outside daily – we all have time to leave the house.
Many of us are thinking twice about going to the gym in the current climate. Is exercising with others a risk you’re prepared to take? The cold weather is not conducive to trundling along to the gym either. The situation may be against us but that certainly doesn’t mean you can’t exercise. Being active is so positive for mental health, and of course, for physical health.
When you are working from home it’s all too easy to never budge from your chair. Get up regularly, design a quick routine to get your heart pumping and maintain your fitness. Never fall into the trap of thinking you don’t have time to exercise! A 10-minute session will increase your concentration and productivity. Do that several times a day and you be getting in your quota and I promise you’ll achieve just as much as you would normally (probably more).
Get out at the weekend
However much you may want a relaxing weekend at home, make sure you get out at some point. It’s not easy at the moment when we’re all avoiding busy places but we can all find somewhere safe to visit. If the weather is fine, go for a good long walk or a bike ride. In poor weather, museums and galleries are generally offering limited access for people to visit safely. Many of us are visiting friends and relatives and arranging to test for COVID before leaving the house.
It’s tough but for your well-being, it’s vital to escape the four walls of your home.
Finally, remember that spring is around the corner. Daffodils are already sprouting and winter never lasts forever. Practice self-care, take time for yourself and enjoy winter walking.