Beat the Winter Blues


By Lauryn Botterman

In case you haven’t noticed, it is wintertime in Syracuse. Yes, it’s cold and, yes, it’s probably snowing as you’re reading these words. The sky is a depressing shade of gray pretty much all the time. This is not U Miami: we didn’t come here for the beautiful weather.

It’s easy to feel gloomy while enduring long walks across campus bundled under innumerable layers. But even when you begin to doubt the existence of that mythical, shining orb (I believe they call it sunshine), you gotta keep your chin up—and your earmuffs on. Before you resort to hibernation to make it through the next few months, read these tips on avoiding the winter blues.

Get active

If your only exercise during the winter season involves shoveling food from your plate into your mouth, you probably need to spend some more time working out to get the endorphins rolling. It might be a pain to make that trek out to Archbold, but the feeling you get after a good cardio sesh is totally worth it. Strive for an hour of physical activity every day, but even if you only have 30 minutes to spare between classes, it’s better than nothing.

Sure it’s tempting to curl up in your bed with your Snuggie and a jar of Nutella, but eating your feelings will only lead to a feeling of regret and an expanding waistline; being active will pay off in the long run. Working out is also a great way to clear your mind of any stress or worry. Sign up for a fitness class as motivation to get to the gym at a specific time every week. Plus, while it may seem that the winter here is infinite, there is a spring and summer on the horizon. That means fewer clothes and more skin: you won’t be able to hide that spare tire under a puffy coat forever. Break a sweat whenever you can—your body will thank you later.

Be spontaneous

The fact that it’s brutally cold is not an excuse to be antisocial. After contending with the elements every week, you deserve some playtime. If the bars and frat parties are getting old, try something new. Grab your friends and get a cab to a nice restaurant downtown; go sledding (or even better—drunk sledding); see a movie. If you want to find something exciting to do, all it takes is an open mind and a quick Google search. Staying social will keep your spirits up even when the temperature is down.

Find a friend (with benefits)

Ah yes, the proverbial fuck buddy—need I say more? There’s no better season than winter to try out a no-strings-attached fling. It’s nice to have someone to cuddle and do more with on those cold, snowy nights. The ideal partner should reside in close proximity to you for convenience, but not too close that you awkwardly cross paths with him or her every time you leave your room. Kudos if you can make it last throughout the entire winter season.

Drink... tea

Tea is basically the answer to all of life’s problems. Seriously. If alcohol is liquid courage, tea is liquid love. Sipping on a mug of hot tea just feels so right. As a bonus, research shows that regularly consuming green tea can raise your metabolism and prevent disease.

Seek help

If your funk becomes a full-on rut that you can’t seem to shake, there is no shame in reaching out for guidance. Talk to your friends and parents; be open about your feelings. If you think you need professional support, call the Syracuse Counseling Center and make an appointment with a certified counselor. They are always ready and willing to help.

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