I hope you can help me…. I am struggling with the January blues and can’t motivate myself to do any of the things I usually enjoy, including my cleaning and tidying. I understand that I don’t have depression, for which I am grateful. But I just feel down in the dumps and lacking in motivation. Please help!
Thank you for contacting me about this issue. Please know that you are not alone... millions of people in the UK struggle with the winter blues, or SAD (seasonal affective disorder). There are so many factors that can cause us to feel down this month, including the lack of sunlight, a post-Christmas comedown, overeating, exhaustion, taking down the decorations, bad weather... before we get started on COVID and politics! It is good to hear that you don’t have depression, as that would require medical help. If you’re sure it’s the January blues, then Uncle Lenny prescribes Vitamin D supplements, self-care and making sure you prioritise good, quality sleep with early nights and restful evening routines. Try to resist the chocolate selection box and focus on small but visible goals such as decluttering, cleaning and tidying your home (setting unachievable goals like losing 10kg will add to your woes). Know that all cleaning and tidying has a multitude of wellness benefits (see our C&THS Clean and Burn weight loss guide!) and by focusing your energy on achievable goals, you can help to bolster a sense of achievement. Tackle one drawer, one cupboard or one area at a time. Also consider sharing your successes on Instagram and engaging with a community of like-minded people on your socials. Our Shine Squad are FABULOUS humans who inspire and support their followers by celebrating cleaning wins and sharing top tips.
Also, make sure you have made plans for the future, things you and your loved ones can look forward to throughout the year ahead – like the Clean & Tidy Home Show at ExCeL London on 8th & 9th October 2022.
If you are finding your situation overwhelming, please don’t hesitate to contact one of the following services for more tailored help and advice:
First stop - Your GP
There are also a number of free services that offer confidential support from trained volunteers. You can talk about anything that's troubling you, no matter how difficult:
Call 116 123 to talk to Samaritans, or email: firstname.lastname@example.org for a reply within 24 hours
Text "SHOUT" to 85258 to contact the Shout Crisis Text Line, or text "YM" if you're under 19
If you're under 19, you can also call 0800 1111 to talk to Childline. The number will not appear on your phone bill.
To you Lolly and all my readers, I wish you health and happiness for 2022!