The winter months can be a drag.


The winter months can be a drag—cold weather and fewer sunshine hours can keep us inside, leaving us feeling sluggish and depressed. Plus, all those holiday parties can wreak havoc on our diets.

The good news is that it’s possible to stay ahead of these issues by identifying the habits that cause them. For example, if you exercise less and sleep more, you might tend to feel stressed out or depressed. Or, you could be battling a weakened immune system thanks to an overindulgence in drinks during a holiday party.

Watch this video for the common habits that burn you out during the winter and what you can do about them, so you can continue to feel great even as the temperature drops.

Don’t have time to watch? Read the full transcript:

Avoiding exercise: Don’t lose motivation when the days get short and cold. Exercises reduces stress and helps ease depression symptoms.

Staying cooped up inside: Sunshine boosts vitamin D, which fights depression. Just don’t forget to wear sunscreen in the winter.

Being antisocial: You may be tempted to hibernate inside on your own, but research shows that socializing makes you happier.

Oversleeping: Excessive sleep raises risk of depression. Sleeping more than 8 hours a night is also linked to a higher risk of stroke, weight gain, and type 2 diabetes.

Drinking too much: Binge drinking at holiday parties can weaken your immune system. That may mean a runny nose, sore throat, and body aches.

Getting stressed while gift shopping: A study found that buying things causes you to dwell on whatever you didn’t buy, making you feel less satisfied. Instead, spend money on experiences: Try gifting a home-cooked meal or day trip.

Eating too much sugar: Go easy on the holiday treats. Sugar woos your brain’s pleasure center, which may set you up for compulsive eating.