For many of us, winter means plummeting temps and navigating ice and sleet on the daily commute. But even if frozen roads and falling snow aren’t part of your picture, this time of year still has its own set of unique (and often stressful) challenges.
Try these tips to let go of the strains of the season and help yourself chill out this winter.
Ease your energy expenses
Dropping degrees don’t have to signal a rise in your heating bill.Changing air filters regularly (every 60-90 days) is an easy way to cut energy costs. Install a timer on your water heater to switch it off at night and back on just before you wake up in the morning. Turn your thermostat down a few degrees and put on a favorite sweatshirt or sweater to stay cozy.
Eliminate pest unrest
Humans aren’t the only ones who want to come inside to stay warmand have a bite to eat when it’s cold outside. Prevent mice from becoming holiday houseguests by keeping entry and garage doors closed, and putting all pantry and pet food in sealed containers. Keep crickets out of the house by sealing any gaps around doors or windows, and make sure the foundation and perimeter of your home is free of the grass, weeds and mulch they love to hide in.
Savor the sun
The lack of sunlight that comes with shorter days can make it tough to invoke a cheerful mood. Make the most of the daylight hours that you do have by going for a walk on your lunch break.Skip the gym and try an outdoor workout. When the sun goes down, light candles throughout your house to create a calm, uplifting atmosphere.
Honor your health
Spending more time indoors with other people, coupled with colder, dryer air can help illness-causing viruses to spread more rapidly. Give your immune system a boost by drinking plenty of clean water(add a squeeze of lemon or other citrus for extra vitamin C) and getting 7-8 hours of sleep a night. Consider taking a gut-friendly probiotic, or adding more fermented foods such as raw sauerkraut and yogurt to your diet.
Protect your pets
If it’s too cold for you to be outside for long periods, it’s too cold for your pet, as well. Limit their exposure to the elements, and dress shorthaired dogs in coats or sweaters that cover them all the way to the belly. Invest in some comfy cat and dog beds to give your furry family members some extra wintertime warmth.
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