With Christmas over and our body clocks all out of whack, January can leave us feeling sluggish and unmotivated.
It’s completely normal to lack energy during the winter months, however this lack of energy often leads us to refuse social plans and lose motivation for our jobs.
Boosting your energy during the colder, darker months is so important in helping us stay motivated, proactive and positive. Here Martin Seeley, Sleep Expert and CEO of MattressNextDay shares his six energy boosting tips that could help you this January.
1. Move furniture closer to windows.
Sunlight has a wonderful effect on our mood and has been scientifically proven to help boost our energy levels and improve our overall mood. During winter, there are less hours of sunlight during the day, and so it’s super important to get outside as much as you can to get some of that all important vitamin D.
During the week, most people work indoors and so getting outside during daylight hours can be difficult. A good way around this is to move your furniture in your home closer to any natural light. This could be your desk, bed, sofa or any piece of furniture you use often. Just having your desk placed in an area that gets natural light should help you to feel motivated and improve your mood.
2. Keep up a regular exercise regime.
Exercise is the best thing you can do to help increase your energy levels, however during winter it can become increasingly difficult to find motivation to go. The best way to get over this is to exercise first thing in the morning, first of all it is light outside so you can go for a run or go to the gym during daylight hours, a morning workout can also increase endorphins, boost energy levels and help keep you motivated for the day ahead. You are also more likely to exercise if you get it out of the way first thing, as the idea of going to the gym when it gets dark in the evening can be quite hard.
3. Work on your sleep hygiene.
Sleep hygiene is imperative for this time of year to ensure you get enough sleep and are utilising the darker evenings, for example, you may want to adjust your sleep schedule and go to sleep a few hours earlier in the evening and wake up a few hours earlier.
We often feel more sleepy during winter, as your body produces more melatonin when there is less sunlight, so a good idea is to make the most of this and get an earlier night’s sleep each evening.
You should also make sure your bedroom is comfortable, relaxed and offers a sleep sanctuary rather than being a stressful environment – try to remove all devices from your bedroom if you can, it’s for sleeping not working. You may also want to invest in supportive mattresses and pillows which can improve your sleep quality in a huge way.
4. Invest in some house plants.
Houseplants are a great way to breathe some new life into your home and increase oxygen levels, which can help to boost energy and motivation levels. Not only do houseplants freshen the air but they also eliminate harmful toxins. They are also a natural mood booster as their appearance and color has been found to increase a person’s mood and bring the outside in.
5. Eat the right foods.
Nutrition is important during winter, and eating the right foods and enough foods for our body is key. Your body needs more food during the colder, darker nights, however be sure to eat healthy and still try and get as much minerals and vitamins in your diet as you can. Hearty and healthy foods are always good this time of year; broths, soups, stews are always a mood booster during winter.
6. Remember to stretch.
Stretching is a great way to increase energy levels naturally, this is because it increases blood flow to any sore muscles and also relieves any fatigue. Stretching also keeps oxygen flowing to your muscles, which helps to delay the onset of muscle fatigue, this helps to build the muscle and prevents them from becoming more tired more often. Yoga or Pilates are brilliant forms of energy boosting exercises to try. Even just 10 minutes of Yoga each morning will help to increase your energy levels.
This article was written by Rachel Bartee and originally published on Your Coffee Break.