How to Beat the Winter Blues

Image by Jonathan Percy, Flickr

Image by Jonathan Percy, Flickr

Inevitably, students will encounter the winter blues. It’s cold, dark, and windy. Snow was fun until it started swirling everywhere and blocking your vision. Most people begin to spend their time indoors. Winter blues can affect students drastically from decreasing their motivation to changing their overall mood. Here are some tips for beating the winter blues.


Lack of sunlight and staying indoors are two of the most common reasons for encountering the winter blues. To solve this problem, go for walks on the occasional bright, sunny day. The sunlight will improve your mood and walking around will make you feel refreshed. However, on the days where the weather is not so cooperative, try working out at home or the gym. Do anything from cardio, strengthening, or yoga to get you active and moving.


The school year can make students extremely busy, but it is important to remember to take time for yourself. Balance is the key to beating the winter blues. Take breaks between extensive school projects or tackle one subject at a time. Choose something fun to do afterwards. Here are some suggestions:

  • Curl up and watch your favourite movies.
  • Head out with some friends for lunch or dinner.
  • Read a book.
  • Reward yourself and head over to the mall for some retail therapy.


Food is a complicated topic for college and university students. We all love it, but time and cost can be barriers. Eating junk food and fast food all the time can be detrimental to your health. It can also make you feel sluggish and unmotivated. Have a healthy snack or meal to boost your energy.

Here are some suggestions for snacks:

  • Yogurt
  • Fruit (apples, bananas, strawberries, etc.)
  • Trail mix (include raisins, sunflower seeds, almonds, or peanuts)

Here are some suggestions for meals:

  • Whole wheat pasta with vegetables
  • Quinoa salad
  • Baked sweet potato and grilled chicken


The average person needs about eight to nine hours of sleep per night. As a student with deadlines, readings, and home responsibilities, regular sleep can sometimes be hard to come by. Create a weekly schedule for yourself to identify fixed times that you cannot change (e.g. class time) and what may need to be missed for the week (e.g. extracurricular activities). Find opportunities to study or do homework throughout the day so you’re not doing any school work into the late hours of the night. On the days where school work never seems to end, try to take a twenty minute power nap so you feel refreshed.

The winter blues may seem like a tough hurdle to come over but with some proper care, it can be defeated. Just remember that balance is key as a student. Too much of one thing is never good for your mental, physical, and emotional health. Use some of these tips to help you beat the winter blues!

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