How to beat the winter blues

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How to beat the winter blues

Once the air turns colder and the days start getting shorter, we all need to make sure we stay positive and well in our homes over winter. There are simple steps you can take to stay comfortable, happy and healthy in your home all winter long. It just takes a bit of extra planning and resourcefulness.

Here are six ways to help beat the blues as winter sets in.

1. Stay warm and well

One of the best ways to stave off the winter blues is to keep your home cosy and warm. Consider  installing a smart thermostat so you can control the heating from your phone.

You can set it at a certain temperature for the daytime and night-time hours with the smart scheduling tool, and when you leave the house, you’ll never heat an empty home thanks to tadoo’s geolocation feature. That way, you can save energy while you're out and still make sure your home stays toasty for your return.

2. Wrap up your home

Insulating your home can set you up for a more comfortable winter. When you lose heat and air through the windows or doors, you may end up spending more money — and using up more energy — to keep your home heated.

Start by walking through your home and inspecting each window and door seal. Look for cracks, discoloration, or warping, all of which can be signs of an air leak. You can then caulk or weather-strip your doors and windows to improve the air retention.

3. Get out and about

Getting outside every day is a good way to stay active, keep your spirits up, and maintain your health. Not only can a quick stroll help boost your mood, a dose of vitamin D from the sunshine can also help strengthen your bones1 so try to get out during daylight hours if you can.

Make a point to spend at least 20 minutes outside each day, no matter the weather. You can enjoy a brisk walk around the neighbourhood, take your lunch to a nearby park, or meet a friend for a socially distanced workout.

4. Light up

Lighting can make a big difference to your mood and energy levels. If you're feeling sluggish or low, you may need to brighten up your home, and you can use low level soft lighting to help you relax too.

Start by replacing your overhead lights and lamps with energy-efficient LED bulbs, which will last longer and help you save energy. You can also add or change the lighting in certain areas of your home to improve functionality or ambiance. If you want a brighter work area, for example, consider replacing your ceiling lights with something more fluorescent. On the other hand, if you want to create a cosy reading nook, try a table lamp or adding fairy lights to a window or bookcase for a relaxed feel.

5. Keep the heat in

Retaining your home's natural heat is a good way to maintain a comfortable temperature throughout the day and save money on your energy bill.

To keep the heat in, try opening the curtains when it's sunny outside, shutting the doors to rooms you’re not using and leaving your oven door open for a few minutes after cooking. If your boiler is over 10 years old, consider getting a new, energy efficient one to make sure your home stays warm all winter long.

And if you’re on certain benefits, you might be eligible for extra support to help heat your home over winter through schemes such as the Warm Home Discount.

6. Zone your home

A simple way to stay well when you're spending so much time indoors is to revamp your space. Creating separate spaces for working, relaxing, exercising, and playing can help you accomplish more and feel happier at home.

For example, if you use your living room to watch TV, read, work out, and chat with loved ones, consider dividing it into distinct areas if you can. You could create a reading nook by moving a chair and small table next to a window. Or, if you have an under-utilised corner, turn it into an exercise area complete with a yoga mat and weights.

You could also make a separate zone for hobbies or creative projects, whether that be knitting, wood-working, or playing an instrument.

Stay healthy all winter long

Staying physically, mentally, and emotionally well during the winter takes effort, but with a few lifestyle and household changes you can get through the days with more energy and joy.

1.  NHS: How to get vitamin D from sunlight