How to beat the January blues

January on a diary, planning for the new year

*Collaborative Post

The first month of the year. The whirlwind fun and festivities of Christmas are over, the decorations have been taken down and the headache that was lingering from New Year’s Eve has just about gone away. New year, new you, and all that – but the thing is: there isn’t much to do.

January is typically a down month with everyone suffering a food, drink and financial hangover from the Christmas period. That can mean a lot of nothing going on which can make for a painstaking 31 days, which is why the “January Blues” is a term that’s thrown around quite a lot.

It doesn’t have to be a drab time, though. Here are five ideas to keep things ticking over at the start of the new year.

Keep on spending

Not the most financially savvy titbit you’ll hear today but, if you can afford to (and that’s a big if after Christmas), there are plenty of bumper deals to be had during retail’s traditionally slow period. No one’s buying anything, so retailers are happy to push sales at an attractive price which you can take advantage of.

A bit of retail therapy always helps – again: as long as you can afford it.

Plan something big

Talking of retail therapy, why not push the boat out – quite literally. January is a great time to find a brilliant deal on a cruise or a big holiday. Whether that’s a getaway in the near future or in a few months’ time, giving yourself something big to look forward to will help keep the excitement going post-Christmas.

Planning something big doesn’t have to be a trip of course. Maybe there’s a birthday or other celebration coming up you can start planning a party for. Getting busy organising something fun for the future is a great way to keep things ticking along.

Get out and exercise

If you’re a new year’s resolutions sort, there’s a good chance getting a bit fitter and maybe losing a little of that holiday weight may have been scribbled down on your list. Exercise is scientifically proven to make you feel not just healthier, but happier and more energetic too.

Whether you’re an absolute beginner or a hardened gym-goer, getting stuck into a new year fitness plan can give you purpose, keep you busy and offer an awful lot of satisfaction to go alongside the more obvious benefits.

Plus, gyms tend to offer cheap sign up deals in the new year, so you can start burning off the turkey sandwiches without breaking the bank.

a lady running

Get out generally

January is glum. Short days, grey skies and little to no sunshine – and that makes us glum, too. For most people, that means staying inside doing little to nothing other than sitting in front of the TV, which doesn’t help the situation. Instead, take the initiative and get out and do something different.

It could be as simple as a winter walk (the daylight will do you good even if it’s not that sunny) or heading out to the cinema. Get out and see your friends, too. Do things together, even if it’s just playing a board game or having a quick drink. Whatever you get up to, you’ll be better off keeping things fresh than watching reruns of Friends wrapped up at home.

Do some admin

Now, this one doesn’t sound like the way to beat the January blues, admittedly, but if you have some practical stuff hanging over you from the previous year, now might be the time to create a clean slate for the new year.

Organising your finances, fixing that bit on the car, repainting a room – whatever it is, you can use your time wisely and have your schedule clear by the time February comes around.

So, five ideas that could help you beat those pesky January down days. Whether you choose to sort some key life tasks out or just spend a little more in the shops, make sure you head into February refreshed and ready to seize the spring.

Do you have any tips to beat the January blues? Let me know below.

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