AFTER the December long holidays comes the rather longish month of January that infamously shows people the blues. According to experts, if you are away from work or gym for a period longer than 14 days, two weeks, you lose touch with your work routine, or your body may suffer fate like gaining unwanted kilograms, in the instance of the gym scenario. But what are January blues with regards to one’s personal health? I-health takes a look in detail in this piece.
As a result of the jam packed and lazy month of December where many close at work for the longest holidays of the year, many turn to over indulge in food and alcohol as well as taking time off from regular exercises and eating healthy. According to studies, apart from losing your fitness capacity during the festive season, you are also likely to lose mental benefits that come with normal exercise be it physical or mental. Source: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/health/article-154140/Four-ways-beat-January-blues.html
But what makes the December long holidays so different from other holidays, or even a long leave that one can take at any other time of the year? What’s so special about this month that then makes January seem too long and dragged? According to Edward Theledi, a Midrand based behavirol specialist, it’s all in the mind. “December as a calender month is naturally just like any other, the problem here is that in terms of working it is the shortest before they close for a stretched period of time,” he said.
According to Theledi, people get over excited during the festive season to a point where they forget to treat their bodies in a healthy way. He said, “the thing about December is that it plays with your mind, you think January will never happen again and you start drinking, for those who do, and they do it excessively than they would any other time. This is usually a result of the fact that December is a lazy month and people are loaded (have money) thanks to bonuses.”
But how do we beat the infamous January Blues and get into the groove for the year ahead? We look at a few pointers to get it right:
Eating properly and healthy,
- You can start by eating properly and healthy. It may seem a good idea to make up for overindulgence of the festive season by skipping important meals like your breakfast, but according to studies that actually leaves you worse off as it affects your mood and concentration levels. Source: http://metro.co.uk/2017/01/02/how-to-beat-the-january-blues-with-these-easy-changes-6356714/.
Have a laugh,
- A lot of people suffer depression and stress because they lead rather serious lives where there’s little to no laugh. To beat the January blues, have a laugh, smile a little no matter how the circumstances. Laughter is the quickest and cheapest way to perk up your mood, even if it is forced, as Holistic Health Practitioner and Laughter Yoga trainer Julie Whitehead once said, “Your body doesn’t know the difference between real or fake laughter – as long as you are willing to laugh you will release the feel good hormones that lift your mood.” Laughter, according to studies, also has physical benefits. 10 to 15 minutes of laughter can burn around 50 calories off. Source: http://metro.co.uk/2017/01/02/how-to-beat-the-january-blues-with-these-easy-changes-6356714/
Distract yourself by listening to music
- Studies show that listening to music can help you relax better and also improves your mood. By listening to music during stressful times like January, you get to get away from the harsh realities of life even if it means for a few minutes or hours, which is good for your mental health and general well-being.
Meditation to scare away the blues
- Meditation for 5 – 10 minutes each morning or at any prescribed time can help you kick-start your day on a positive note especially in January where most people are tired and demotivated. According to Dineo Thulare, a mother of three, meditation helps her deal with any kind of stress. “I am a young mother to three children aged between 8 and 3. you can easily assume the kind of stress I have to deal with most of the times, and on top of that I am a professional woman,” she said.
In conclusion, behavioural specialist Edward Theledi said people needed to treat December just like every month so that they don’t express the January blues. “People have to be aware that what they do in December will certainly have to come and bite them in January. If you abuse your body in the festive season then you will have to suffer the consequences in January,” he said.