Three Ways to Beat The Winter Blues

by Diana Proemm, CTRS

Winters are tough especially in the North Country. Living in the south is new to me and not having to struggle with cold temperatures every day has been a blessing. Don’t get me wrong I would jump at the chance to have a ski resort up the road again. Thankfully there are twenty some miles of trail a few miles down the road to mountain bike on.

Motivating to get outside when it’s cold is hard. You can read a wonderful article by my friend Beverly on how to get a workout in when it’s frigid outside. I love being outside no matter what and I don’t mind a little drizzle, snow but obviously prefer some sunshine. Light this time of year is hard to come by. I can tell it’s starting to last longer. It’s like literally seeing the light at the end of the tunnel.

If you are like me, I used to hunker down inside and not venture out too often in the northern winter. I would read a good book, do chores or arts and crafts. This is not conducive to keeping our mental health in check. We need to get our bodies moving and get outside.

1. Exercise

It seems simple enough but inherent fatigue comes with darkness. I used to trick myself into saying that I would just go for a 5-10 minute walk just to get some fresh air. Once I was outside moving and enjoyed the beauty around me, I usually kept going. Adventure out on a lunch walk or head out with a friend.

2. Get Into Nature

Venturing outside brings along green (or white) therapy. Being in nature can foster mindfulness and calm.
I know that I find my grounding in nature and it’s my mental health medicine. I make it habit to spend time in nature and shut off my phone as often as possible.

3. More Play, Less Work

It’s a given fact that there will always be work to do. Postponing much needed “fun or play” time will leave you down in the dumps fast. Set boundaries for yourself or with your employers and follow through with them. There will always be laundry, bills to pay so go out and enjoy a little bit of the day and do not feel guilty for it.

As a recreation therapist, my work is also play. Adventuring out with the ladies for hike, or frequenting the local trampoline park are what some of my work days look like. Avoid staying isolated and get out amongst your friends and family to alleviate the blues.


Bigger Picture RT, LLC aims to empower women through outdoor adventure therapy retreats with Bigger Picture RT, LLC. Our vision is healing women globally who suffer from past trauma, anxiety, depression and PTSD.

Join me for a Bigger Picture experience that will be your trail to transformational healing. These adventure therapy trips for women will empower you to dive into the most rad terrain you’ll ever come across. You will sign up for a journey with other ladies to join a sisterhood of greatness. The trips are designed to invoke holistic therapeutic processes that may challenge your emotions; but the best part is the group and professional support you’ll receive the whole time. Emotional and physical safety is our number one and learning how to cope amongst others going through similar issues is a good way to move forward. You will leave with a sense of accomplishment.

Bigger Picture creates positive change in the lives of women struggling with anxiety and PTSD through weekend retreats and outdoor adventure. Check out our adventure trips for women here.

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