january blues

How to beat the January Blues

Struggling to stay optimistic this month? Here are a few simple strategies to help…

Despite our social media feeds being filled with New Year positivity and #2020goals, January can be a tough time for many. Christmas is over, you’re likely looking at a long stretch of work before your next holiday, the weather is miserable – it can feel like there’s not a great deal to look forward to right now. In fact, the feeling is so pervasive that the third Monday in January has been coined Blue Monday thanks to its reputation as being the most depressing day of the year.

But, whether you’re dealing with specific troubles or just a pervasive feeling of general gloominess, there are things you can do to help get you through to spring. Read on for our guide to beating the January Blues…

Eat well

healthy eating

Okay, so we’re not suggesting you go as far as Dry January (although it might help), but ditching the junk food and eating a few leafy greens will do wonders for both your mental and physical health. The likelihood is you overdid it on the booze, the sugar, the fat and the salt over Christmas. You weren’t alone. But if you woke up on 1 January feeling lethargic, sluggish and heavy, this is why. Give your body a break and use this processed food-free time to get in the kitchen and sharpen up your cooking skills. Need some inspiration? Here are some brilliant recipes from the likes of Alfred Hitchcock, JFK, Gene Kelly and Ernest Hemingway.

Be sociable


You might feel like you did just about as much socialising as you could handle during the festive season but, trust us, there’s nothing that will get you out of a work, eat, Netflix, sleep rut quicker than spending time with friends.

If your usual go to is a pint at the local, why not use the New Year to try something different? We bet if you do a few minutes of internet searching you’ll find your area is bursting with old school entertainment. Go and see one of this year’s Golden Globe-winning films, rediscover your talent for bowling or try that new restaurant that’s just opened in your neighbourhood. We guarantee you’ll feel better for it.

Take up a new sport


We’re not saying you should do anything as drastic as make a New Year’s resolution to become the next Andy Murray but every well-rounded gent should be semi-skilled in at least one sport. If you’re lacking in this area, make 2020 the year you rectify that.

Not sure where to start? Find out which sports your friends play and join them for a practice session to see what suits you. Once you’ve found your passion seek out local clubs or lessons to help hone your skills. You’ll meet new people, develop new talents and feel fitter. We’d say that’s a win-win.

Read for pleasure


Those who read are more interesting – fact. Reading opens up new corridors of intellect and knowledge, giving you more to talk about and add to conversations. Proper printed books are also a great way of giving you some screen downtime, letting you become immersed in something other than the never-ending anxiety-inducing scroll of your Twitter feed. Not sure where to start? Here are some of our recent favourites.

Book a holiday


There’s nothing that will get you out of your January funk faster than having a holiday to look forward to. And, while summer may still seem like lightyears away, we guarantee it’ll be here before you know it – especially if you can look up images of that tiny bay in Croatia you’ll soon be escaping to during a seemingly endless work day. And, if you really need to get away from it all, you could always book on these truly off the grid travel destinations.

Make realistic resolutions

Setting yourself impossible challenges at the start of the year is only going to lead to misery and feelings of inadequacy. We hate to break it to you but you’re probably not going to get the body of Hugh Jackman, bank balance of Warren Buffett and business success of Richard Branson in one year.

Instead focus on more realistic goals and, rather than denying yourself pleasure, consider adding new skills to your life. Feeling creatively unfulfilled? Take up photography or enrol in a life drawing class. Want to further your CV? Learn a new language or take a coding course. There are more ways to become a more interesting and well-rounded person than getting amazing abs.

Need a little help with Dry January? These are the non-alcoholic spirits that will make it a breeze

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Further Reading