BEAT THE WINTER BLUES
(see links disclaimer at bottom)
This article is not intended as medical or legal advice. It is a blog article about activities to do based on a popular expression.
January blues is documented as a real condition, and experts say it's different than Seasonal Affective Disorder (which is caused by a lack of sunlight). Some say it is the let down after the hype of the holiday season. However, no matter the reason or the cause (the blues or lack of sunlight): you feel blah, and that's a fact. This is why many people plan for a trip in January. But what if you are not able to travel? Read on.
You can plan for the January blues and get through the month to focus on the rest of the year. If your depression is serious, please seek a medical professional. 1. You can make resolutions, just make a few and phase them in. Make your goals realistic. Better yet, celebrate your new year at different times: maybe the beginning of spring, the start of summer or in September. Don't forget several religions and ethnicities have their own days of renewal. For example, Kwanzaa, MLK Day and Black History Month go from December 26-February 28. Do a search for activities in your area. The Chinese new year is in January and Three Kings Day (celebrated in many Latino cultures) is January 6.
2. Take a day trip: If you live in a cold weather region, you have two choices: embrace it or escape it. Winter sports will be in full peak season. You can make reservations for overnight stays but many resorts have day passes to enjoy skiing, ice skating, snow tubing, riding a snowmobile, etc. The Northeast of the USA is extremely popular (the Berkshires in Massachusetts, upstate New York, the Poconos in Pennsylvania and all over Vermont, just for starters).
3. Did you save money during the holidays? Then, become a snowbird. Escape to warmer regions. Winter cruises or Caribbean weekend getaways are popular. Many cruise lines may have sales and will be less crowded during January. But for the Northern Hemisphere, the real challenge is to totally escape winter and head where it is truly summer: Australia, Chile, South Africa. Anything below the equator reverses the seasons.
4. Become a tourist in your area: now is the time to see concerts, shows (the ice skating shows are popular this time of year), movies and museum exhibits. Brunch on weekends, join a gym or stream workouts in your home. The tourists will have gone home and you will have your own town or city to yourself.
5. Get your house in order. Literally. Plan a project you need to do, roll up your sleeves, put on some music and clean out that closet, sort through old clothes, paint the bathroom, do all of those chores that you have been putting off. Or, start a new hobby: learn a language, play an instrument, take up an art.
Plan for next January
How do you pay for these adventures to get you through the winter? You plan for it now for next year.
1. Watch your spending this year (even as you travel). Being thrifty through the year will feel great when you are on a mid-winter vacation. 2. Use an app to help you save (but ignore the temptation to get the debit card that may be offered). Acorns will round off your purchases up to the next dollar and put it into a small savings. You set the boundaries about how much you want to save by also scheduling small automatic deposits.
3. Many banks and credit unions still have vacation clubs. Try not to link it to your checking (to avoid the temptation of dipping into it during the year). You will be surprised at how much even $5 a week will look like at the end of the year.
4. In the middle of the year, think about a membership to your favorite local museum or botanical garden (after you have recovered from holiday expenses). You'll have someplace to go for the whole year.
5. Use a travel agent to plan big trips. You may be able to pay in installments. Cruises allow payments in installments, also. Planning a trip sets a goal and can help you look forward to something.
We can help you discover activities in your area! The key is to try to keep busy and to realize that January doesn't last forever. Only 31 days. Happy Travels!
Copyright Disclaimer under section 107 if the copyright act of 1976, allowance is made for "fair use" for purposes such as criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching, scholarship, and research. Fair use is a use permitted by copyright statute that might otherwise be infringing. Non-profit, educational or personal use tips the balance in favor of fair use.
This article is my personal opinion. I am a travel agent. I am an Amazon Associate.
All text and photos copyright Marcia Crayton All Rights Reserved 2023
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