Positive steps to wellbeing this winter

During the winter months, the days are shorter and the weather can be bad. Sometimes you might find yourself not doing much. Here are some ideas that can help you stay happy, suggested by the mental health charity Health in Mind.

At this time of year, you might find you have stopped doing the things that make you happy, and are just counting down the days to spring. Your mental health may be the last thing on your mind, but we know just how important it is. Here are some ideas to boost your wellbeing this winter.

Keeping a positive focus
A bird's eye view over a table with a plant, a clipboard with a list and a hand holding a pen.

1. Make a list of the things that are most important in your life.

This could include people you are close to, or tasks and hobbies you enjoy

2. Think about different activities that focus on the things that are most important in your life.

Now that you have a list of the most important things in your life, come up with activities that involve these important things. A good way of doing this is by organising the activities into things you can do now. Then things you can do in the next week or two. Then things you can do in the a few weeks or months. For example, I will go for a walk around the park tomorrow, and I will send a card to a friend next week

3. Create a plan for your activities.

For each activity, think about and write down:

• what day you will do it
• what time you will do it
• where you will do it
• the things you need to do it

A white thought bubble on a blue background.

4. Look back at your list

Take time to look back at your list of what is most important to you. This can help you think about whether what you are doing is what you would really like to be doing and focusing on what is important to you.

Your 5 Senses Scan

Grounding exercises are often used to help us stay connected to the present moment. They can help us manage anxiety, stress, or difficult emotions. The grounding exercise below asks you to make a list using your senses. You can write the list down, say it out loud or say it in your head.

Make a list of:
5 things you can see
4 things you can hear
3 things you can touch
2 things you can smell or taste
Take 1 deep breath.

About Health in Mind

Health in Mind is one of the partners of the In Care Survivors Alliance, which runs Future Pathways. It is one of Scotland’s best-known mental health charities. Since 1982, it has developed to meet people’s changing needs, and it now promotes positive mental health and wellbeing in local communities across Scotland.

It builds hope, resilience, and understanding of mental health and wellbeing. It does this through support, collaborations, campaigns and resources. People are at the heart everything Health in Mind does. Each year the charity helps around 4,000 people to live the life they want to live.

You can find out more about Health in Mind at health-in-mind.org.uk

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