Natural Remedies for the Winter Blues

I have suffered from mild seasonal depression since I moved to the Midwest. With long, cold, and dreary winters, I find myself feeling down and lethargic from about December thru February. While I have never felt depressed enough to seek professional help or medication, it does affect my daily life and I find that I am tired all the time. While I know it is only temporary, I don’t enjoy feeling this way so I have slowly started finding a few natural and easy ways to perk up my mood and help me survive the winter.

  • I call an HVAC company for furnace repair Indiana This may sounds like it is out of left field, but bear with me. If my home is cold or the quality of air is poor, I find that I feel worse. Having my furnace serviced at the beginning of the winter improves the air quality in my home and makes it warmer with less energy use. This has the extra bonus of saving me money on my heating bill so I can buy myself a special treat from time to time, which also improves my mood.
  • I get exercise. My natural state during the winter is pretty much hibernation. The more I sleep though, the worse I end up feeling. I make sure to get at least 30 minutes of cardio 3 to 4 times a week to improve my mood and energy level.
  • I add pops of color. Research has shown that yellows, oranges, pinks, and other bright colors can actually improve your outlook. While I do not repaint my home or anything drastic, I do add some fresh flowers or bright throw pillows and blankets to brighten up my space and improve my outlook.
  • I get as much sun as I can. I open my blinds to let sunlight in. Sunlight increases lots of feel good hormones in your body and I get as much of it as I can during the winter.
  • I use happy scents. There is some research that suggests scents like lemon or lavender can improve your mood and relieve your stress. I diffuse some essential oils throughout my home for a little bit of a pick-me-up each time I breathe through my nose.

Using these tips I have been able to manage my winter blues to feel happier and more energetic. If you suffer from mild lethargy and need some simply ways to feel better, I suggest you try them. However, if they do not work or you find yourself slipping into a deep depression, make sure to talk with a healthcare provider to ensure that you are indeed suffer from mild winter blues, not a more serious emotional condition.

Cleaning Tips to Make Your Home Sparkle

If you are like me, you love a clean home but probably don’t have the time to clean every day. With animals, kids, and a husband my home can get dirty very quickly. One way I have found to keep my home cleaner for longer (other than wrapping everything in plastic) is to deep clean once a month.

The first weekend of every month I spend a few hours cleaning my home thoroughly. The easiest way I have found is to start at the top and work my way down. First I dust all the corners and my AC vents. I was my walls from the top down to the baseboards. Next I move to the kitchen and wash the counters, tops of cabinets, cabinet doors, appliances, and clean out my microwave. I also bleach my sinks and use vinegar to clean out the inside of my dishwasher. Then I tackle the bathrooms and scrub every surface. I spend extra time on the shower heads to remove all built up sediment and hard water. From there I dust all my furniture and polish the wood. I finish by vacuuming my floors and upholstery and map my tile.

In addition to my monthly cleaning binge, I also have certain tasks that I do annually or bi-annually. Twice a year I pull out my step ladder to clean all of my windows and organize my closets. Each year I call a Parma OH AC service company to have my ducts cleaned. This prevents dirt from blowing throughout my home and keeps my entire house cleaner.

By spending extra time once a month cleaning my home each week is much easier. Rather than spending hours every weekend, I can spend an hour or two once a week to spot clean and troubleshoot any extra dirty areas. This gives me more time to enjoy my family and relax after a long work week.